Baby seal in Hawaii spotted playing with fishing knife

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A baby seal in Hawaii was spotted this week playing in the shallow waters with a fishing knife. On Tuesday, the Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources reminded the  public to be sure to dispose of trash properly.

On the organization’s Facebook page, a video showed the seal pup diving near the rocks and moments later, surfaced with an orange fishing knife in its mouth. The baby seal, named Manu’iwa, is a monk seal recently weaned from his mother. Of course, there was grave concern the pup could have harmed himself; he is currently being monitored by The Marine Mammal Center at Kailua-Kona.

“There was real concern that the seal pup might swallow the knife,” stated the officer who captured the incident on video in a statement earlier in the day. “It’s a reminder to all of us to properly dispose of our trash and not to leave it on Hawaii’s beaches…”

At one point the seal dropped the knife under the rocks; the knife was later found. According to animal experts, it is very important for  young seals not to have human interactions so they can learn to be wild animals and exist on their own.

NOAA’s Office of National Marine Fisheries asks people to report all monk seal sightings to your island’s Marine Mammal Response Coordinator:

Oahu: 808-220-7802
Kauai: 808-651-7668
Molokai: 808-553-5555
Maui / Lanai: 808-292-2372
Hawaii Island – East: 808-756-5961
Hawaii Island – West: 808-987-0765

(Photo and video of baby seal courtesy of the Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources)

Check out the minute long video:

There have been too many times when animals have been rescued from having been entangled in fishing nets, crap traps, fishing line and materials that dig into their bodies. The Hawaiian monk seal has been on the endangered list since 1976 and is currently listed as the most endangered seal in the United States. Statistics suggest less than 1,100 Hawaiian monk seals are left, and a newborn pup only has a one-in-five chance of making it to adulthood.

Fortunately this little guy has another chance. If you see something – report it.

Did you know that if you want to get updates from a Facebook page, you need to do more than “like” it? To get recent postings in your Facebook feed, you must also hover your mouse over the word “following” and then click “see first” from the drop-down menu. You may want to check back with your favorite pages on occasion because Facebook often changes your settings, no longer having your having your favorites among those to “see first.

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