Southern elephant seal spotted for first time in Sri Lankan waters

Xinhua | Tuesday, 10 December 2019

A southern elephant seal was spotted for the first time in Sri Lankan waters and has attracted many locals as it swarmed off the coast of capital Colombo searching for a place to haul, local media reports said.

The seal was first spotted in the southern waters of Sri lanka, off the tourist town of Unawatuna, located about 144 km from capital Colombo in mid November. Since then, it has made it's way up to the western coast of Sri Lanka, searching for a place to molt, a seasonal process of shedding fur.

Experts including marine biologist Asha de Vos have advised the public to refrain from approaching the seal and give it enough space to complete it's natural molting process. The Sri Lankan Navy and Department of Wildlife have taken steps to ensure the seal's safety.