Spotted seals get special attention

Updated: 2014-05-02 10:10

By Zhu Chengpei and Zhang Xiaomin (China Daily)

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Spotted seals get special attention

Liaodong Bay is one of the southernmost of the eight breeding regions for spotted seals in the northern Pacific Ocean. [Photo by Ma Zhiqiang / for China Daily]

On April 2, he counted nearly 260 spotted seals, similar to the number he saw last year.

Ma says the island is safe. There are spotted seals, birds, oysters, small crabs, and no other animals.

But his colleague Zhang Peijun says he has heard of some dangerous situations Ma has had.

One time, after Ma was taken to Piantuozi by a boatman, Ma discovered he had lost his cellphone. The only thing he could do was to wait until the boatman came to pick him up as they had agreed.

"A field survey such as what professor Ma is doing is arduous work. It is not easy being engaged in it for years. Just imagine being on an uninhabited island and having no contact with the outside," Zhang says.

Ma and his colleagues are concerned about the possible extinction of spotted seals.

There is a national nature reserve for spotted seals in Dalian. After many years of efforts, local people are aware of the importance of protection. Illegal hunting has been put to an end.

But economic development around Liaodong Bay is still a threat.

"I hope it can be listed as wildlife under first-class State protection and enjoy better protection," Ma says.

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