Hawaiian Monk Seals Doing Well

HONOLULU (KHNL)- Last October twin monk seals were returned to midway atoll after being in captive care.

Since returning to their natural habitat, twin monk seals have adapted well to their new environment along with four other seals which are part of a captive care and release program.

"The two twins that were brought in at weaning, within a day or so began to wander and move all about the atoll, two of them were seen the day after release, eating some fish and shredding them on the beach," said Robert Braun of NOAA.

The seals activity is monitored through a satellite tracking system, which includes a device attached to their backs. These same devices were attached to seals that were not brought up in captivity.

"We have satellite link telemetry that tells us where they go and how they utilize their habitat we can compare those that were fed in a captive care program to those that weren't, so we'll look at how they move around and feed, and see who is successful over time," said Robert Braun.

They have no names, but these seals are beginning to reach celebrity status.

"We look at them as ambassadors to gather peoples interest and represent the plight of their species and what we're trying to do to help them," said Robert Braun.

Scientists hope to apply what they've learned from this pilot project as they make plans for a future program.

If you want to track the twin Hawaiian monk seals and others in the captive care project, on the link found on this page.