ZSL launches new study into seal deaths

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Sci­en­tists from in­ter­na­tional con­ser­va­tion char­ity the Zo­o­log­i­cal So­ci­ety of Lon­don (ZSL) have re­ceived new fund­ing to en­able study of seal deaths around the English coast­line, in a bid to in­crease un­der­stand­ing of the threats fac­ing th­ese charis­matic marine mam­mals. The fund­ing from Nat­u­ral Eng­land, the gov­ern­ment na­ture con­ser­va­tion agency, will al­low ZSL’S In­sti­tute of Zo­ol­ogy (IOZ) to con­duct an in­ten­sive six-month in­ves­ti­ga­tion of de­ceased seals re­cov­ered from around the English coast. As part of this project, the char­ity is also call­ing on the pub­lic to sup­port this im­por­tant work by con­tin­u­ing to re­port sight­ings of any dead seals via the na­tional strand­ings hot­line (0800 652 0333 or via email on strand­[email protected]) Eng­land’s seal pop­u­la­tions are cur­rently fac­ing a range of po­ten­tial threats, in­clud­ing fish­ing by­catch, ship-strike and en­tan­gle­ment in marine de­bris, as well as the pos­si­ble risk of fu­ture out­breaks of diseases such as in­fluenza A (H10N7) and phocine dis­tem­per virus (PDV).

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