Officials determine monk seal on Molokai died of gunshot wound to head

Published: Dec. 21, 2021 at 9:36 AM HST|Updated: Dec. 21, 2021 at 10:34 AM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The state Department of Land and Natural Resources and NOAA are seeking information regarding the death of a monk seal who was shot on Molokai in September.

Officials said the Hawaiian monk seal, known as L11, died of an intentional gunshot wound to the head on Sept. 19.

DLNR said a postmortem analysis determined that the young female “suffered severe, lethal trauma from a bullet fragment.”

Authorities said this is the third intentional killing of a monk seal on Molokai this year.

“It is past time for anyone who has information on the killing of this seal and the others to step forward,” said DLNR Chair Suzanne Case.

“Earlier this year many people were outraged when a visitor slapped a seal on the back, and we trust the level of indignation we saw associated with that incident will be exceeded by the despicable shooting of seal L11 and the others taken by human hands.”

Officials said intentionally causing harm or killing a monk seal is both a state and federal crime.

Anyone with information is asked to call the DOCARE hotline at 808-643-DLNR or use the DLNRTip app.

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