DALIAN, April 11 (Xinhua) -- Twenty-four spotted seals were released into the sea on Thursday in the costal city of Dalian in northeast China's Liaoning Province.
The 24 released seals were among 100 baby spotted seals that were illegally poached in Feb. 2019, according to the provincial government.
A total of 39 seals died, and the surviving 61 have been taken care of by animal experts and vets in local aquariums and Liaoning Ocean and Fisheries Science Research Institute.
"We treated the spotted seals seperately according to their health and developmental status. The ones in poor physical condition recovered after a series of treatments," said Han Jiabo, head of the institute.
The seals released to the sea on Thursday were all fully recovered and are healthy enough to survive in natural habitat waters, according to Han.
The rest of the spotted seals will be released after further health assessments.
Spotted seals are under Class One national protection in China.