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Scientists help tsunami injured Hawaiian monk seal

By Associated Press

LAST UPDATED: 5:55 a.m. HST, Apr 25, 2011

Researchers on a recent trip to the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands helped rescue a Hawaiian monk seal found tangled in marine debris. They also helped monk seals injured or separated from their mothers during last month's tsunamis.

The scientists are due to talk about their effort at press conference on Monday.

They returned Friday from a trip to the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument to drop off fellow researchers and restore five field camps damaged in the March 11 tsunamis.

They traveled on the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration ship, the Oscar Elton Sette.

The Hawaiian monk seal is an endangered species. Its population numbers less than 1,200 and is declining at a rate of about 4 percent per year.

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