Sunbathing endangered seal draws crowds in Israel

STORY: This endangered Mediterranean monk seal has

drawn crowds by sunbathing on a Jaffa beach

Location: Jaffa, Israel

Monk seals usually prefer the cool beach

caves of the Greek and Turkish islands

but this one decided to shed her

winter fur out on the open sand

(Harel Baz, Marine Ranger, Israel Nature and Parks Authority)

"This individual came here to molt, it's changing of the fur from winter to summer and the boy who found her called her Yulia. In 2007, she was observed in Turkey and there they called her Tugra, so now she has two names. And usually the molting lasts three to four days, we hope that she'll take her time and stays with us as much as we can."

The global Mediterranean monk seal population

is estimated between 400 and 500, Baz said

making it one of the rarest marine mammals