> Bob, I was wondering what the significance of testing the chemistry of a > seal's serum is? > Thanks Again > Part of my job is to help the veterinarians at the aquarium in the care of stranded marine mammals, in particular seals. Seals like other animals can't tell you whats wrong with them. So in order to figure out what their problem might be we take a blood sample. One portion of that blood is called serum. It contains things like glucose, proteins, and electroytes. We can look at the concentration of those components and try to determine if all of the animals organs are working properly. For instance, we recieved a Hooded seal the other day. The animal looked fine but, was very quiet. We took a blood sample and found that the animals electrolyes were not correct: Sodium = 171 mmol/l. It should normally be 150 -155. We were able to correct this by giving the animal extra fresh water. That same animal is cruising around its pool and doing quite well. Thanks for the question, Bob Cooper.