Monk seal attacked on Kauai gives birth to healthy pup

monk seal RK30_155753

A Hawaiian monk seal that was attacked while pregnant on Kauai last week has given birth.

Ocean wildlife officials said Thursday photos of RK-30 show her with a pup on a remote beach on the Na Pali coast.

Both mother and pup appear to be healthy, they said.

“It was previously reported that the mother was described as being a tough individual. She’s survived previous shark attacks, marine debris entanglements etc., and it appears the stress of the human attack on her last week did not affect her ability to successfully deliver this pup,” said Jamie Thomton, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration marine mammal response coordinator.

Officials will monitor the two to ensure they are safe and not disturbed, especially during the nursing period.

“Then at that point, the seven-week point, the pup will be weaned from the mother,” Thomton said. “The mother will depart, leaving it independent.”

Thomton says the state Department of Land and Natural Resources and NOAA will continue to monitor the pup.

The public is asked to stay at least 150 feet away from the animals.

In addition to safety concerns, officials say RK-30 will likely be very protective of her pup.

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