Evaluating the Health of NSW Seals
NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) in collaboration with Wildlife Heroes are delivering a series of webinars for the volunteer wildlife rehabilitations sector across various topics on wildlife rescue, rehabilitation and wildlife health. The webinars provide an opportunity for volunteer wildlife rehabilitators to connect with professionals in the field and provide an update on developments and current best practice in wildlife health.
Evaluating the health of NSW Seals
Large thriving colonies of fur seals once resided along the NSW coastline. Fur seal populations are slowly recovering and extending back into their historic range after they were almost hunted to extinction in the late 1700’s and early 1800’s. Seals are one of the more easily accessible and readily available marine mammals to assist scientists in understanding the marine environment. Research has focused on abundance estimates as well as fur seal behaviours such as foraging strategies, habitat selection and breeding behaviours, however, there is little data on the health of fur seals. This talk will focus on the current research into evaluating seal health and the role of the wildlife rehabilitation sector in collecting robust information and evaluating fur seals.
Jane Hall is a PhD student in the Southern Ocean Persistent Organic Pollutants Program based within the Environmental Futures Research Institute at Griffith University, Australia. She is also a wildlife health specialist at the Australian Registry of Wildlife Health at the Taronga Conservation Society Australia. In 2016, she was awarded a Churchill Fellowship to investigate ways to improve Australia’s capacity to manage wildlife disease incidents. Her research interests span both terrestrial and aquatic species under the One Health paradigm, and current studies are focused on the health of Australian fur seal species, specifically Arctocephalus forsteri.