Hawaiian Monk Seal at French Frigate Shoals

When: Mon. May 22, 2017, 5 p.m.
Where: NELHA Gateway Center
Presenter: Sylvester Orosco, the Marine Mammal Center

There are only about 1400 Hawaiian Monk Seals in existence today, with about 300 of them inhabiting the main Hawaiian Islands. There are 2 individuals considered resident on Hawaii Island, the rest are transient. Why do certain seals stay or move around? Why does the smaller population in the inhabited islands tend to fare better than those in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands?

Ke Kai Ola is a satellite facility of The Marine Mammal Center, and the only Hawaiian Monk Seal hospital in the State of Hawai'i. Built at NELHA in 2014, its mission is to respond to emergencies, rehabilitate and release monk seals into the wild, and support the survival of the species. In addition, its staff conducts and assists with research to better understand monk seal biology and behavior.

Sylvester Orosco is the Hawaiian Monk Seal Response Manager and Animal Care Specialist at the Ke Kai Ola facility. He has a degree in marine biology, and has volunteered and worked for Marine Mammal Center’s in Sausalito, since 2004.

After the presentation, we will have pupus, drinks, and conversation. We are informal and it is potluck, so please bring a pupu and non-alcoholic beverage to share. Reusable plates and cups are encouraged, as is taking home your own trash.

5:00-5:15 p.m. Gather and Networking
5:15-6:15 p.m. Presentation and Q&A
6:15-7:30 p.m. More Networking, pupus

Photo above, Mark Sullivan, from WikiMedia Commons under a CC-by-SA-3.0 license

Photo below, Sylvester Orosco

Seal by Honokohau Harbor