Skinned seal find shock for DOC staff

Last updated 06:35 09/07/2014

Relevant offers

Hawke's Bay

Man jumps from truck before it hits bank and rolls More than 1000 Hawke's Bay, Wellington and Hutt Valley patients affected by strike action Police seize more than 900 cannabis plants from East Coast bush Car set on fire beside busy Hawke's Bay road Hawke's Bay priest likens church's action after affairs to Donald Trump Changeable Wellington weather set to continue through to Anniversary Weekend Police name couple as investigations continue into deaths in Waipukurau, Hawke's Bay Danielle McLaughlin: Youthful Obama vows to fight on for American values Houses evacuated after digger hits gas main in Pahiatua Hastings' mayor Lawrence Yule to seek Tukituki nomination

Finding a shot and "professionally skinned" seal washed up on a Hawke's Bay beach has shocked Department of Conservation staff.

They have called for anyone who knew who was responsible to report them.

The New Zealand seal (kekeno) remains had been in the water for sometime before washing ashore near the Port of Napier and being found at the weekend, conservation services manager Dave Carlton said.

It was unclear where the seal was killed, but seals were often seen "resting on our beaches" or swimming nearby.

"What was obvious was the seal had been killed and this is a clear offence under the Marine Mammal Protection Act 1978, and a successful prosecution could result in up to a year in prison or a maximum fine of $100,000."

He said the seal may have been killed by someone who believed seals ate too much fish in the area, depriving fishermen, or have been slaughtered by someone indulging in target practice.

"This sort of behaviour is incomprehensible. Contrary to some thinking, seals do not impact significantly on the local fish population. They feed mainly on squid and small mid-water fish, mostly off the continental shelf.

"Alternatively, using the animal as target practice then skinning it was equally insidious."

The seal had been "professionally skinned", he said, either on the shore or out at sea and then dumped overboard.

"Before the arrival of humans, a population of about 2 million kekeno inhabited New Zealand.

"We would like to hear from anybody with information . . . someone may notice a fur seal skin hanging in someone's garage, for instance," Carlton said.

Ad Feedback

- The Dominion Post

Special offers
Opinion poll

How many coffees do you have a day?

5 or even more

3-4

2

1

Anything from 1-5.

Don't touch the stuff.

Vote Result

Related story: Coffee as we know it at risk of dying

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content