New Zealand seals’ problems


This video is about New Zealand sea lions.

From the New Zealand Herald:

Auckland Islands sea lions’ birth rate down by 31pc

4:00AM Wednesday Jan 28, 2009

The number of sea lion pups born this season on the Auckland Islands has dropped by 31 per cent, say Department of Conservation researchers.

More than 85 per cent of all New Zealand sea lion breeding occurs on the islands, and DoC is concerned about the vulnerability of breeding colonies.

Marine conservation manager Simon Banks said a team of researchers was on the island trying to find reasons for the decline.

“Indications at this stage are that this is not a repeat of the bacterial epidemics that led to a decrease in the number of pups born in the past,” Mr Banks said.

“Our researchers have, however, observed that there are a lot fewer females coming ashore to breed this year.”

The sea lions, now estimated to number only about 12,000, were once found widely around the mainland coastline.

But the breeding population has largely retreated to the sub-Antarctic islands. They have faced natural and human threats such as fishing, and disturbance by beachgoers and dogs along the mainland coastline in the past year.

DoC wants to rebuild the population to non-threatened status.

- NZPA

Record fall in New Zealand sea lion pups means minister must cut kill quota: here.

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5 thoughts on “New Zealand seals’ problems

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