It's studies like this one that we need to perform on other marine mammals. You can make that happen by donating today. So many worthwhile projects are pending funding, we can't stop now when we are making progress. Let's help more species together!
Saving marine mammals one species at a time
By now, you are probably aware that marine mammals are subject to contaminates in their natural habitats. But what we don’t know is how to determine which poisonous or polluting substance is causing the health issues in the marine mammals. By collecting marine mammal samples, we can answer those critical questions about wildlife health. But sample collection is tricky; storage of the organic matter before lab analysis is even more delicate, and validating the data has to be accurate.
Through the decades, advancements in the dried blood spot cards are identifying metabolic diseases. Now, veterinarians and biologists are utilizing these cards to detect levels of toxins in the grey seal. A study funded by the Wild Animal Health Fund performed the analysis of results from the cards compared to that of whole blood to confirm that the results from the cards are valid. Good news, this study is the first to establish a baseline for marine pollutants in a healthy marine mammal population. By this confirmation, the tricky situation of sampling becomes a lot simpler using these cards to protect marine mammals, including those grey seal pups.