We are pleased to announce that we tagged two spotted seals near the mouth of the Colville River, near Nuiqsut, Alaska, on 7 and 9 September. These seals were tagged as part of a collaborative effort between Alaska Department of Fish and Game, Arctic Marine Mammal Program and North Slope Borough, Department of Wildlife Management staff and assisted by Vernon Long, a subsistence hunter in Nuiqsut. We deployed a SPLASH tag on SS18-04-F, a young female spotted seal, and a CTD tag on SS18-05-F, a subadult female spotted seal. We also deployed flipper (SPOT) tags on both seals. The flipper tags were provided by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Marine Mammal Laboratory.
During the last 14 days we have received locations for 1 bearded and 6 spotted seals. Bearded seal BS17-01-F (purple square) is located near sea ice at the 200-m isopleth north of Utqiaġvik. The two spotted seals recently tagged near Nuiqsut (SS18-04-F, red circle and SS18-05-F, green circle) have left the mouth of the Colville River and entered the Chukchi Sea. Spotted seal SS18-01-M (orange circle) is near the mouth of the Amguyema River, between Vankarem and Cape Schmidt, Russia. Spotted seals SS17-02-M (blue circle) and SS18-02-M (brown circle) continue to make localized movements near Scammon Bay. Sea ice data are courtesy of the U.S. National Ice Center, dated 18 September (http://www.natice.noaa.gov/products/daily_products.html).