Hawaiian Monk Seal Rehabilitation

NOAA Fisheries Monk Seal Rehabilitation in Hawaii Ke Kai Ola Marine Mammal Hospital The Hawaiian Monk seal is critically endangered. There’s only eleven hundred left. It takes a lot of different actions to save a species. Ke Kai Ola is a hospital that was built for the rehabilitation for the Hawaiian Monk seal. it’s a facility that’s really needed for the recovery of the species. When the animals first arrive, so far they’ve been malnourished, extremely emaciated and so we take a lot of effort into getting them rehydrated. We have to go very slow because as Kilo, the animal that’s on site right now she’s at birth weight, she’s only fifteen kilograms right now and she’s probably four-six weeks old. So we have to go very slowly and then we introduce fish mash and salmon oil, get a very rich formula. We’re chopping up herring and making it into what we call a smoothie-fish smoothie. And we need to give them that until the teeth start erupting and again until she’s feeling better that she could even handle a whole fish. Once her teeth come in and they’re full then we can start offering her fish. We monitor the animals on our screen so we don’t have to go in and see what’s going on. Like once we’re feeding them we can watch from the screen to see who’s eating and how much. We want to make sure that they’re getting their fair share. But we do all that we can not to have the animals become habituated to us. We want them to be wild when they return and being able to forage on their own. There’s only eleven hundred animals left. Each individual counts. NOAA Fisheries www.fisheries.noaa.gov

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