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Mediterranean Monk Seal Food Web

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On 24 June 2011, the Blue World Institute of Croatia filmed an adult female underwater in the northern Adriatic, off the island of Cres and a specimen of unverified sex on 29 June 2012. On 2 May 2013 a specimen was seen on the southernmost point of Istrian peninsula near the town of Pula. On 9 September 2013, in Pula a male specimen swam to a busy beach and entertained numerous tourists for five minutes before swimming back to the open sea. In summer 2014 sightings in Pula have occurred almost daily and monk seal stayed multiple times on crowded city beaches, sleeping calm for hours just few meters away from humans. To prevent accidents and preserve monk seal, local city council acquired special educational boards and installed on city beaches. Despite clear instructions, an incident occurred with a tourist harassing a seal. The whole event was filmed. Less than a month later on 25 August 2014 this female monk seal was found dead in the Mrtvi Puć bay near Šišan, Croatia. Experts said it was natural death caused by her old age.

Pregnant Mediterranean monk seals typically use inaccessible undersea caves while giving birth, though historical descriptions show they used open beaches until the 18th century. There are eight pairs of teeth in both jaws.


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