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US state prosecutors really hope young threatened seals will stop getting the eels in their nostrils / Boing Boing

Hawaiian monk seals are threatened and carefully monitored by NOAA researchers who are worried that the seals continue to get…

Hawaiian monk seals are threatened and carefully monitored by NOAA researchers who are worried that the seals continue to get the eels firm deep in the nostrils.

The researchers have removed “three or four” eels from juvenile monk seals in the last two years, mostly in recent months. The seals are good. The eels died.

The scientists do not know how the eels stuck on the seals’ nostrils. Perhaps they swam up after turning into a coral reef, or maybe the seals ate them and shaved them up and caught them in the nose. They worry that the seals will not be able to keep water from their lungs when they dive – which leads to pneumonia &#821

1; or they will end up with runny eels stuck in their heads.

Still, Littnan said that it would not seem possible that a “tall fat eel” should end up through a seal’s nose instead of out of mouth. The “most likely” theory, he said, is that monk seal teens are not anything different from their human counterparts. Monk seals “seem to be naturally enticed to get into difficult situations,” said Littnan.

“It almost feels like one of the teenage trends that happens,” he said. “A juvenile seal made this very stupid thing and now the others try to imitate it.”

Although no seals have died or been severely affected by the eels, a dead animal has in their noses for a long time, potentially adverse health effects, “said Simeone, chief of Ke Kai Ola, a monk seal hospital in Hawaii run by a marine mammal center .

“Make Better Choices”: Dangerous Hawaiian monk seals continue to get the eels stuck their noses and researchers want them to quit [Allyson Chiu/Washington Post]

( via JWZ )

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