Photo: Caribbean Monk Seal Extinct, U.S. Officials Declare



The Caribbean monk seal, also known as the West Indian seal, has not been spotted in the wild since 1952. In June 2008 U.S. officials declared the animal extinct.

The species, seen above in an artist's rendering, was hunted extensively for its meat and blubber from the 1700s to the 1900s. Biologists say the seal's population eventually became so small that it was no longer sustainable.

Picture courtesy NOAA Historic Fisheries Collection


NEWS FEEDS    After installing a news reader, click on this icon to download National Geographic News's XML/RSS feed. After installing a news reader, click on this icon to download National Geographic News's XML/RSS feed.

Get our news delivered directly to your desktop—free.
How to Use XML or RSS

ADVERTISEMENT

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC'S PHOTO OF THE DAY

50 Drives of a Lifetime

Listen to your favorite National Geographic news daily, anytime, anywhere from your mobile phone. No wires or syncing. Download Stitcher free today.