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Archive for October, 2011

Hawaiian monk seal known as B24 sporting telemetry tag

B24. Photo credit: Mary Miyashiro.

Four-year-old female RB24 is showing marked improvement!  She was given an antibiotic injection on August 4, and her gradual weight-gain was almost immediately apparent.  It is unclear whether the de-worming, the antibiotics, or a natural recovery from her sudden decline is to credit for her improvement; but regardless, it’s a relief to see it!

Weaned seal RK56 (born in May to mom RK30) has been regularly seen between Ke’e and Ha’ena Beach Parks.  He finally made the trek from his natal beach, Miloli’i on the Napali Coast!  The two weaned seals born in April have also left their birthplace to explore nearby Aliomanu and Anahola.

Freshly molted Hawaiian monk seal known as K30.

K30. Photo credit: Mary Miyashiro.

Two of our 2011 mother seals, RK22 and RK30, successfully molted in August.  Hawaiian monk seals go through a “catastrophic molt” once per year, losing their entire outer layer of fur and skin.  This is a physically stressful time for the seals, and they often stay on the beach for up to a week during their molt.   Female seals molt as part of their reproductive cycle.  After weaning a pup, they “super-forage” to fatten back up, and then molt before mating and carrying the next year’s pup.

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