Sunday, December 1, 2013

Rare Photography

– Hawai'ian Monk Seal 'H01' and Her Baby KeoKea –
All photos: L A Promotional Design & Photography


 The Hawai'ian Monk Seal is one of the most endangered marine mammals in the world, and their numbers are declining. This 10-week old baby and his mom have taken up residence at Keokea Beach, where the launch ramp area is closed and will remain this way for another month.  There are volunteers watching over them until the park closes before dark.
There is a table there with information and flyers from the Monk Seal Foundation, hoping to educate everyone that comes to witness this rare event.  There are only 6 Monk Seals on the Big Island, 4 are adult males plus this little boy.

These Monk Seals are barely visible against the rocks – Mom blends in, while baby just looks like shiny black rubber.

He was pretty restless the whole time I was there, just like any other little kid. You can see what are probably bite marks all over mom because he just wants to play!

He tries a different position, thinking his cuteness will wake her up.

Then he gets bold and decides to venture out on his own.

Mom is finally paying attention.

She calls him to come back.

I wonder if he can hear her under water!  She is now in pursuit.

Sassy little kid!

Baby ignores mom.

Mom corrals baby.

I am  now volunteering to help secure a long happy life for these two, and hopefully many more!

**sad note**  At 10 months old, KeoKea was found with a large fishing hook lodged in his lung, he died from his injuries.  I have an attachment to this baby, and this loss has been hard for me and the entire Response Network to deal with.