Why have seals been getting eels stuck up their noses?

Why have seals been getting eels stuck up their noses?

The photo of the Hawaiian Seal was with the tail end of the creature hanging from its nostril was released by the Hawaiin Monk Seal Research Program (HMSRP).

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. "In nearly 40 years of monitoring, we have actually never observed this until a few years ago", Littnan said.

"If I had to guess, I would say that it's one of those unusual oddities", Littnan said. "We don't know if this is just some odd statistical anomaly or something we will see more of in the future". "Now it's happened three or four times and we have no idea why".

'If you come across a Hawaiian monk seal mom and pup, please stay quiet and enjoy them from a distance, remaining behind any signs or barriers that might be present'.

'Hawaiian monk seals forage by shoving their mouth and nose into the crevasses of coral reefs, under rocks, or into the sand, ' the NOAA team explains.

Do you mind? A juvenile Hawaiian Monk Seal with an eel up its nose.

Fortunately, no harm to the seals was observed.

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Another possibility is that the seal downed the eel and then regurgitated it up the wrong way, much like that time you snorted out milk when your friend told you an unexpected joke.

"We have now found juvenile seals with eels stuck in their noses on multiple occasions", the Hawaiian Monk Seal Research Program wrote in a Facebook post on Monday.

If that had been the case with this seal, the animal probably could have gotten rid of the eel on its own by shaking its head around. Except ... is that an eel coming out of his nose?!

Apparently, eels getting stuck in seals noses happens occasionally, but no one is certain as to why.

In every instance of eel-nose, including this one, the researchers have removed the eel successfully. "The eels, however, did not make it". But recent years have shown "encouraging developments", according to NOAA Fisheries.

The refreshing news comes as researchers work to protect the endangered species, which is one of just two species of monk seal still in existence.

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