BDMLR Medics responded to the first grey seal pup of the season in North East England on Wednesday 27 September.
The pup was observed close to a large colony with risk of scaring the group back into the water and causing injuries if Medics got too close. However, after a few hours of observation, and after the colony had gone into the water, Medics picked up the pup as rough sea was now pushing it about on the sand and there was no sign of any adult seal interest. It’s thought that the pup could have washed ashore from one of the nearby seal colonies, and away from its mother.
The pup was taken to one of BDMLR’s overnight facilities and was given fluids and a heat lamp to rest under. The pup was closely monitored and the next morning was given a full assessment at the local veterinary surgery. The pup was uninjured but was having a few breathing problems so she was kept for a further night before being transferred to Hessilhead Wildlife Centre for ongoing care.
Grey seal pups are regularly left on beaches by their mother and can be alone for a number of hours while the mother stays a short distance away in the water. The mother will keep watch over her pup and even the smallest disturbance can cause disruption in their routine which in the worst case can lead to abandonment. If you come across a white seal pup on the beach, please keep right back and call BDMLR on 01825 765546 for advice.
Disturbance: where a colony is present (a group of seals), DO NOT attempt to get near them. Even one seal knowing you are near can spook them all, causing them to rush into the sea and leading to injuries. Please make sure when observing seals to stay at least 100 metres away.