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Archive for the ‘R371’ Category

Here’s another recap for 2021. This list identifies the top ten Hawaiian monk seals “reported” on Kauai during 2022. “Reported” seals are those that were called in—and identified—to the Hawaiian Monk Seal Conservation Hui hotline. (See a monk seal on the beach? Report it to 808-651-7668.)

However, what’s not included in this list are mom/pup reports. Because “pup watches” by dedicated volunteers tend to elevate pup “reported” numbers and because moms spend the first four to six weeks of their pups’ lives right by their sides, the reports of the mom/pup days are not included.

Keep in mind, other things affect this list. Monk seals often have favorite locations where they haul out. If a monk seal favors a location that happens to be easily accessible by humans, bingo, that seal will be reported more often to the hotline. Molting monk seals get reported more often, too. As well, young monk seals are often sighted and reported more, too, because they tend to hang around and make themselves noticed;-) Lastly, volunteers impact this number, too. Those dedicated volunteers who regularly scout certain beaches for monk seals (thank you very much) will also help inflate a certain seal’s confirmed reports.

Take a look at the Top Ten list for 2022:

  1. RF28: 108 confirmed sightings. Born in 2014 to R028 (who died of toxo after valiant try by veterinarians to treat and save her). Bottom lip scar left side. Most telling ID: Natural bleach mark over left shoulder. left tag gone. Bottom right tag broken.
  2. RK58: 104 confirmed sightings. Born on 7/16 in 2018 to RH58. Pup switch resulted in abandonment at 19 days age. Raised at Ke Kai Ola. Released from captivity on 2/11/2019. Returned to Ke Kai Ola for rehab 2/16/21 due to infected dog bites.
  3. RG58: 97 confirmed sightings. Born 2015 to RH58. Natural bleach above tail, line scar left rear. One of our biggest males.
  4. TempV11: 74 confirmed sightings. Subadult male/ bleached marked Feb. 2022 because too few scars to ID. Became a regular at Poipu in spring 2022. Pit scar mid back, scar left neck.
  5. R371: 70 confirmed sightings. Niihau female w/pup 2017.  Large shark bite right rump and in front right fore flipper, natural bleach mark on top of head, pit scar base of left fore flipper, hook scar left corner of mouth, cookie cutter right shoulder, crescent flap scar belly. Likes to hang out at Mahaulepu and Shipwrecks.
  6. RM36: 68 confirmed sightings. Nice big sub-abult female. Tagged 4/21/2021. Pup of RB00; born 3/15/2020. Cookie cutter scar on right shoulder.
  7. R2XW: 67 confirmed sightings. Very small juvenile female from Niihau. Tagged 4/5/2021 at Glass Beach Eleele. 88 cm auxiliary girth. 
  8. RQ52: 56 confirmed sightings. Born to R400 at Polihale on 6/25/2022. Nursed for 38 days. Translocated to safer location after weaning. Eventually, she moved back to the west side.
  9. R7AA: 54 confirmed sightings. New small Niihau female seal to Kauai 6/2017. Monitored for back abscess, caught and treated and tagged 9/2017. Over the years she has demonstrated unique behavior when molting—moves high up the beach at night and onto resort furniture, parking lots and streets, so must be closely monitored.
  10. RM28: 51 confirmed sightings. Born to RK28 in 2020. De-hooked in June 2022. Also involved in displacements at Poipu keiki pool.

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Field Report: May 2022

The Kauai team logged 248 seal sightings this month. This included 27 individually identified seals.

  • May: 248
  • April: 294
  • March: 292
  • February: 233
  • January: 233
  • December: 267
  • November: 168
  • October: 229
  • September: 251
  • August: 213
  • July: 286
  • June: 218
  • May: 209

New:

·       RB00 gave birth to female pup PK1 on May 26. This is the 4th consecutive year of pupping on Kauai for RB00. Pup watch schedule established; no issues so far. The pup is thriving.

Updates:

·       Monk seal activity in the Poipu area remains high, with several seals hauled out daily on the very busy Poipu Beaches. 

·       Numerous displacements from the Poipu Keiki pool again this month

Molting: 1 seal completed a molt this past month. 

Displacements: It was a busy month with 4 additional displacements from the keiki pool. There were many seals in the Poipu area socializing, mounting, and playing together all day long. It was primarily subadult males that were the issue. The following seals were displaced:

·       R371 adult female – 2 times

·       R1KY adult female – 1 time

·       RF28 adult male – 1 time

Volunteers:

·       Volunteers are stretched thin with so many seals requiring intensive management at Poipu. We will continue to recruit additional new volunteers.

·       Volunteer pup watch schedule has been established and includes one 3-hour shift each day.

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Monthly Update: The Kauai team logged 180 seal sightings this month. This included 32 individually identified seals.

December: 180
November: 223
October: 258
September: 203
August: 324
July: 239
June: 179
May: 262
April: 348
March: 350
Feb: 303
Jan: 284

New:

  • Subadult female R7AA was sighted with a medium sized circle hook in her left cheek. The Kauai team responded and were able to capture her on the beach and remove the hook without complications. A 2-foot heavy gauge monofilament leader and pigtail swivel was attached to the hook which presented a serious entanglement and drowning hazard. The seal was immediately released and has been sighted since with no signs of infection.
  • An untagged adult female that has not been sighted on Kauai previously hauled out at Poipu and has since become a somewhat regular seal on the south shore. This seal was previously sighted on Niihau in 2017 with a pup and has an ID of R371. She has numerous scars and can be easily identified, even without flipper tags.
  • Another untagged Niihau adult female was sighted for the first time on Kauai’s north shore. Her ID is R367.
  • Another untagged likely Niihau seal molted at a remote east side beach. He is a new seal to Kauai and has a temp ID of Temp361.
  • Yearling RL58 observed with a large fresh cookie cutter shark bite very close to the genital slit. The seal was closely monitored for possible infection, and the seal has quickly recovered.
  • A volunteer observed a tourist attempt to pet the large adult female RK90 at a west side beach. The seal responded by leaving the beach. Outreach was conducted by the volunteer.

Updates:

  • RH38, the seal rehabbed at KKO and released in July, continues to thrive on north shore. Her tracking tag remains attached, however the battery has died so no further data is being transmitted.
  • All of the 6 pups born this year have been sighted recently and continue to thrive.
  • Displacements: No displacements this month.
  • Molting: Adult male RN02 spent 3 weeks at the busy Poipu Beach in pre-molt, molt, and post-molt which required extensive volunteer coverage. One other seal molted this month in less busy areas.
  • Vaccinations: A booster morbillivirus vaccine was given to new juvenile seal R1NI.
  • Bleach marking: none this month.

Research/Support of PIFSC

  • Sub-sampled scat, molt, and tissue plug samples accordingly.
  • Logged all seal sightings for PIFSC database. Organized photos and reported sightings, molt tallies, survival factors to send to PIFSC.

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