The extreme mortality rate of elephant seals in the Valdes Peninsula has attracted concern from the social and scientific communities, who attribute the increasing numbers to the highly pathogenic avian influenza H5N1.
The latest development is a man who was able to document on film about fifty dead sea lions near Escondida Island with his camera.
Bird flu: ‘Shocking’ numbers
A recent report analyzed a species census in a strategic area of the Valdes Peninsula on the northeastern edge of Chubut province. In the first two weeks of this month, he described the results as “shocking” given the evidence that “offspring are at high risk of being infected with the HPAI H5N1 virus”.
The document warns that “pup mortality during the elephant seal breeding season remains consistently below 1%, with extreme mortality rates this year ranging from 56% to 74%.”