A hundred years ago, fifty thousand ringed seals inhabited the Gulf of Finland. By 2007, because of industrial pollution, commercial fishing and global warming only two hundred remained. Nobody seemed to care; the ringed seals were put on an endangered species list and forgotten.
Until Slava and Lena Alexeev, two young scientists living in St. Petersburg, Russia, were introduced to a baby ringed seal who needed rescue and rehabilitation or otherwise face certain death. Ringed seals had never survived in captivity. Nobody had tried to rescue, study, or save them from a rapid extinction. Conventional scientific wisdom said it was impossible.
Slava and Lena named her Hita. Against amazing odds—environmental, social, financial and political—they took Hita into their apartment and into their hearts. They not only saved Hita but established and influenced rescue operations for an entire species.