The Mediterranean monk seal is one of the world’s most endangered marine mammals, with fewer than 600 individuals currently surviving. It is believed to be the world’s rarest pinniped species.
The sightings of the monk seal were distributed all over the year (refer to sighting timeline) and specially in the mating season which prove that the Monk Seal is not a vagrant but a rare resident. The timeline also shows a rapid decline of the Monk seal which raised the importance of taking action and safeguarding the monk seal populations through preserving their remaining habitats. This decline is due to the degradation of habitat, competition with fishermen, and lack of awareness and national plans.
One major key in this process is preserving and maintaining protected habitats to help secure the active conservation. SPNL is engaging with fishermen and stakeholders from sighting locations such as: the Dalieh-Raouché area, Mina of Tripoli, Jbeil (Byblos) and Qoleileh to establish proper networking between them, as well as sustainable awareness on Monk Seals survival.
‘Field Guide to the Mammals of the Middle East’ (released on 2015) is an accessible text suitable for graduate students and professionals in the fields of mammal biology, conservation biology, and ecology, as well as nature conservation practitioners and mammal specialists.