ABERDEEN, Wash. - A Ribbon Seal that's been from Seattle to Marysville was spotted in Aberdeen yesterday. Lead Officer Robert Kegel tells us he and Animal Control Officer Mike Roble responded to the report of a seal in distress on the Wishkah River. Kegel said the seal didn't appear to be in distress, but noted that the white ribbons found around the neck and rear of the seals may have appeared to be rope wrapped around the seal. Dyanna Lambourn, Marine Mammal Research Biologist, at the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife tells us Ribbon seal markings are unique and can be used to identify individual animals. She says it appears to be the same animal sighted in Puget Sound in January of this year.
Ribbon seals normally inhabit the North Pacific Ocean, especially the Bering and Okhotsk Seas. Ribbon seals have also been observed in parts of the Arctic Ocean, including the Chukchi, eastern Siberian, and western Beaufort Seas. During the winter months, ribbon seals range throughout the North Pacific Ocean have been previously observed as far south as California.