Why have seals been getting eels stuck up their noses?
Why have seals been getting eels stuck up their noses?
Enlarge ImageYes that's an eel in a seal. NOAA Fisheries Brittany Dolan
07 December, 2018, 21:54
After spotting the freakish pairing at French Frigate Shoals in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands this past summer, researchers quickly acted to relieve the seal of its discomfort.
These seals search for prey that likes to hide by shoving their mouths and noses into the crevasses of coral reefs, under rocks and into sand.
According to the final post in this saga, researchers were able to trap the seal and extract a 60cm-long goddamn eel from its nose, noting that it "was surprising as only about 10cm were hanging out" of its nose before extraction.
According to the NOAA website, researchers started spotting eels in seals' noses just a few years ago, even though the Hawaiian monk seals have been monitored for over 40 years due to their status as a protected endangered species.
Researchers noted that in all the cases, the eels have been successfully removed.
If you were a Hawaiian monk seal, you'd have to contend with THIS: getting a god damn EEL stuck in your GOD DAMN NOSE.
It's sad to hear that the eels didn't survive after being removed from the seal's nose, but considering they chose to enter the seal's nose without permission, they're really the architects of their own demise here.
"We don't know if this is just some unusual statistical anomaly or something we will see more of in the future", the NOAA wrote.
The program answered the question: "We don't know". This whole situation could just be a "weird anomaly" or a "crazy statistical quirk, and we may never see it again", he added.
Monk seals are endangered.
Fortunately, no harm to the seals was observed.
One theory is that seals, which often regurgitate their meals, are simply throwing up eels through their noses. Maybe the eels secrete some kind of aquatic nose-beer analogy. "The eels, however, did not make it".
There are around 1,400 Hawaiian monk seals left in the world, and they are all found in the Hawaiian islands. Over the course of several posts, researchers with the program wrote they noticed a male seal with an eel stuck in its face and making a "wheezing sound with every breath".
Good news, though, at least for the seal.
The picture, which shows the seal looking surprisingly chill, has everyone amused.
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