We are very happy to pass on that the Hawaiian monk seal population as surpassed 1,500 according to NOAA! This represents and increase of over 100 seals since the last count in 2019.
The following is a statement from NOAA: "The Hawaiian monk seal is one of the world’s most endangered seal species. For almost 40 years, NOAA has monitored the seal’s population trend, researched threats, and taken many actions to save seals. Hawaiian monk seals are also one of NOAA’s nine Species in the Spotlight. After decades of declining numbers in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, the total population of monk seals began to increase gradually in 2013 in both the Northwestern and main Hawaiian Islands. This is evidence of the species’ resilience and the payoff of diligent conservation work. This year the population surpassed 1,500 for the first time in more than 20 years!"
At Maui Monk Seal we have personally seen an increase in the number of seals hauling out (coming on shore). Several years ago it was almost unheard of to see more than one seal on the same beach on Maui, but now it is becoming more common. While the seals are still critically endangered this is great news!