Reward is offered in shooting of seals


POSTED: Monday, June 08, 2009

The Surfrider Foundation's Kauai chapter is offering a reward—as yet unspecified—for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for the shooting death of two Hawaiian monk seals on Kauai.

The reward will come from donations to the organization, which so far total $8,000 in the aftermath of the deaths, officials said.

“;The Surfrider Foundation was outraged that somebody would willfully kill these animals, who posed no real harm to people here on Kauai,”; said Surfrider Foundation volunteer Carl Berg. “;We felt there was a tremendous amount of disrespect for the ocean and the ocean creatures.”;

According to the foundation, the deaths of the two indigenous mammals were not isolated incidents since they occurred within a short time span.

On April 19, boogie-boarders found I-19, a 4-year-old Hawaiian monk seal, shot dead in the water at a Kaumakani Beach.

On May 21 the carcass of a pregnant seal was found dead on the North Shore of Kauai. A necropsy on the seal, known as RKO6, determined that it had also been shot.

There are fewer than 1,200 of the endangered monk seals left in the world.

“;That's what makes this such a crime,”; said Gordon LaBedz, chairman of the Surfrider Foundation's Kauai chapter. “;We're doing everything we can to bring these guys back into the community.”;

For more information, contact Berg at 639-2968 or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).