Federal fisheries police say a sixth gray seal has been found shot to death on Cape Cod.
The Yarmouth-based International Fund for Animal Welfare says the seal was identified Friday as shot after a CT scan.
The news comes of five slain seals found on beaches from Dennis to Chatham over the last six weeks.
The fund said ballistic evidence is being analyzed by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Office of Law Enforcement. A special agent with the office, Todd Nickerson, said the animals had painful deaths and the office is taking the crimes very seriously.
Gray seals are protected under the federal Marine Mammal Protection Act. Their population has boomed in recent years, which has drawn great white sharks to the area to feed on them.
Information from: Cape Cod Times, http://www.capecodonline.com