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Endangered monk seal pup found dead in Hawaii likely killed in dog attack, officials say

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An endangered monk seal pup found dead on the North Shore of the Hawaiian island of Oahu last month was most likely killed in a dog attack, federal officials said.


The pup, tracked by researchers as RS48 but otherwise known as Ho‘omau Lehua, was born Feb. 23 not far from where she was found dead on June 12, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries said in a statement Thursday.


The seal had puncture wounds and other injuries, and officials believe she most likely died from a dog attack. There was no evidence of underlying disease, the agency said.


Ho‘omau Lehua was at least the second monk seal to have been killed on Oahu this year. On March 12, RQ76, also known as Malama, was reported dead on the Westside, not far from the North Shore, NOAA Fisheries said.