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28th May, 2015

MOm reports on the progress of Andriana

from MOm’s Facebook page

A month after her release, Andriana continues to enjoy her journeys in the northwestern Aegean. The daily distances she travels are impressive, while diving depth has been steadily increasing and has reached to a depth of 50m. Until now Andriana has completed her first “tour” of the northwestern Aegean Sea (as can be seen on the map), returning just recently to the island of Alonissos in the National Marine Park of Alonissos, Northern Sporades (NMPANS). During this “tour” Andriana managed already to get entangled in a long-line; we would like to thank our friend from Kria Vrisi at the island of Evoia and the members of the Management Body of the NMPANS who helped to free Andriana from this fishing equipment.

Every single one of us can make a difference and help, not only Andriana, but all wildlife live in harmony next to us. It should be noted that the data collected by Andriana’s tag are extremely important in helping us understand how monk seals move and behave in their marine environment and ultimately help us protect them more efficiently.

3rd February, 2013

Park expresses disgust over shooting

In a press release posted on its Facebook page, the Management Body of the National Marine Park of Alonnisos Northern Sporades (NMPANS), has expressed its disgust and regret over an incident which saw a Coast Guard officer spray automatic gunfire at semi-wild goats at Planitis in the internationally-recognised monk seal protected area. The President of the Management Body has stated that the Park will now determine what course of action to take against those responsible for the incident.

The NMPANS is regarded as one of the most important monk seal breeding habitats in the Mediterranean.

Originally posted on YouTube — apparently by the perpetrators themselves — video of the shooting spree provoked widespread condemnation. Although the video has since been removed by the user from YouTube, it is still available on other channels.

Conservationists are now left to wonder whether this was a “one-off” incident — or whether other offences may have been committed, possibly within the Core Zone of the Park. As TMG has reported on many previous occasions, with chronic funding shortages facing the NMPANS Management Body, effective guarding and monitoring remains essentially non-existent. Annual monk seal pup counts have not been taken for years, rendering any reliable assessment of the population or conservation measures, impossible.

Please check The Monachus Guardian Facebook page for updates.

katsikopolemos 2 di CDemo83

19th February, 2011

Stranded pup enters rehab on Alonnisos

In an announcement dated 18 February, Greek monk seal NGO MOm announced that a young seal found stranded on the Aegean island of Kythira had been transferred to its rehabilitation unit at Steni Vala, Alonnisos, in the Northern Sporades.

MOm reports that the pup was initially seen hauled up on Feloti beach, Kythira, by a local resident on 7 February. A week later, on 13 February, it received another alert, this time by a Kythira veterinarian, who reported that the animal appeared in distress, the photographic evidence and information provided leading MOm to speculate that the animal had remained stranded for the entire week. First aid instructions were communicated by phone. The young seal, however, failed to show any visible signs of improvement after a further two days, was visibly weak, and failed to react to human presence.

→ Continue reading Stranded pup enters rehab on Alonnisos

3rd February, 2010

Nefeli’s return to the wild

Greek NGO MOm has released photos of Nefeli’s return to the wild.

The orphaned Mediterranean monk seal was released into the National Marine Park of Alonissos, Northern Sporades on Saturday 30 January 2010 following treatment at the organisation’s rehabilitation unit in Steni Vala. Further information.

→ Continue reading Nefeli’s return to the wild

30th January, 2010

‘Nefeli’ swims free

Nefeli is carried from the MOm rehabilitation centre to the launch that will carry her into the heart of the Marine Park (Courtesy MOm)

Orphaned Mediterranean monk seal ‘Nefeli’ was released into the National Marine Park of Alonissos, Northern Sporades today, following a traditional parting ceremony held in the fishing village of Steni Vala.

Rescued as a week-old pup on the Ionian island of Kefalonia on 14 October 2009, the female seal then underwent three and a half months of treatment at the MOm rehabilitation centre in Steni Vala.

→ Continue reading ‘Nefeli’ swims free

30th January, 2010

Orphan ‘Nefeli’ to be released today

Press Watch, Kathimerini / Athens News Agency, January 30, 2010

A young Mediterranean monk seal called Nefeli takes a last look at the conservationists who found the orphan on a beach on the Ionian island of Cephalonia last October before her release [on Saturday 30 January 2010]. The seal, which was 10 days old when she was found, has been cared for by staff at the offices of the Hellenic Society for the Study and Protection of the Monk Seal (MOm) on Alonissos in the Sporades group of islands.

Story Link

17th October, 2009

Orphaned, newborn Monachus monachus rescued in Kefalonia isl.

Press Release | MOm

NefeliAn orphaned new-born Monachus monachus was found stranded late in the afternoon of Wednesday 14th of October, at the beach of Assos in Kefalonia island, by local residents.  MOm’s Rescue team travelled immediately to the area and examined the 10 day female pup that was still alone at the beach, lost from its mother following the severe storms of the last few days. The animal was found dehydrated and had visible injuries on its body, probably form the wave action on the rocky coast. MOm is the Greek NGO working actively, over the last decades, to conserve the Mediterranean monk seal, a critically endangered species with less than 600 individuals remaining throughout the world

The young seal was named “Nefeli” by the local residents and volunteers, that found her helpless and stood guard overnight, until MOm’s team arrived to the area. MOm’s specialists provided first aid to Nefeli and, assisted by the Port Police officers of Fiskardo, prepared the pup for its immediate and safe transportation to the Rescue and Rehabilitation Centre of MOm at Steni Vala, Alonissos, within the National Marine Park of Alonnisos, Northern Sporades.

Upon its arrival at MOm’s Rescue and Rehabilitation Centre and the completion of the first veterinary tests, MOm’s staff, in collaboration with the Veterinary School of the University of Thessaloniki, will put Nefeli in an intensive veterinary therapy and rehabilitation program, The first critical phase includes the gradual provision of fish porridge, as there is still no substitute of maternal milk for the Mediterranean monk seal.

First AidThe treatment and rehabilitation program of a Mediterranean monk seal pup lasts approximately 5 months and if it is completed successfully the animal is released healthy back to its natural environment. The complete rescue, treatment and rehabilitation procedures all follow strict international protocols. The whole process is long and demanding for both Nefeli and the people involved, with several tests, continuous treatment, around the clock feedings and hard physical work. But MOm’s specialized personnel, the various expert collaborators and especially the volunteers assisting, are all optimistic and determined to make their best to see Nefeli healthy.

MOm would like to thank the Port Police Authority of Fiskardo and all the local supporters for their valuable contribution in the effort to rescue the new-born monk seal pup.

If you would like to support Nefeli’s rescue and treatment program, do visit MOm’s site www.mom.gr.

16th May, 2009

Artemis found dead on Skiathos

Orphaned monk seal pup ‘Artemis’ has been found dead on Skiathos in the Northern Sporades.

The body was discovered on 14 May 2009, floating in Skiathos harbour. It was transferred the same day to Athens for necropsy, conducted by Prof. Dr. Thijs Kuiken, a veterinary pathologist specialising in marine mammals from Erasmus University, Rotterdam.

The necropsy established that Artemis was in excellent nutritional condition and overall health, with a body weight normal for her age. There was clear evidence that the seal had died as a result of drowning – most probably the result of becoming entangled in fishing gear.

→ Continue reading Artemis found dead on Skiathos