LIHUE, Kaua’i — Federal authorities are investigating the death of a Hawaiian monk seal on Kaua’i.
The 4-year-old male seal was removed from a Kaua’i beach last weekend.
David Schofield is the marine mammal response coordinator for the National Marine Fisheries Service.
He said the animal, known as I-19, was alive when spotted as part of a seal count on April 18. But it was found dead the next day.
Hawaiian monk seals are the most endangered seal species in the United States, with fewer than 1,300 remaining.
They are protected under the Endangered Species Act, Marine Mammal Protection Act and state wildlife laws.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is urging anyone with information on the seal’s death to call its hotline at 800-853-1964.