Federal officials are investigating two suspicious deaths of young Hawaiian monk seals on Molokai in June, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
On June 25 NOAA said an unidentified, juvenile male seal was found dead at Pakaa beach on the west end of Molokai. On June 18 another juvenile, male seal, RJ26, was found dead on the east end of Molokai near mile marker 22. RJ26 was born at Kalaupapa in April 2017.
These two deaths in June are in addition to the death of RJ42, which was reported in May on the island. NOAA said this brings the total of Hawaiian monk seal deaths believed to be from human-inflicted trauma on Molokai to eight since 2009.
Anyone with information on the deaths of the seals or to report seals (and dolphins, whales and turtles) in trouble can call NOAA’s hotline at 888-256-9840.