October 14, 2011
This Sept. 2011 image provided by the North Slope Borough shows a ringed seal displaying significant hair loss on the Artic Ocean coast near Barrow, Alaska. An unknown disease is killing or weakening ringed seals along Alaska’s north coast. Ringed seals, the main prey of polar bears, and a species that rarely comes ashore, in late July began showing up on the Beaufort Sea coast outside Barrow with lesions on hind flippers and inside their mouths, along with patchy hair loss and skin irritation around the nose and eyes.
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An unknown disease is killing or weakening scores of ringed seals along Alaska's north coast, where the animals have been found with lesions on their hind flippers and inside their mouths.
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