Thu. Dec 3rd, 2020

Isle of Wight Observer News

The Island's Free Newspaper

Rescued seal was ‘feisty’ by morning

2 min read

An eight-week-old seal pup was rescued from Yaverland beach on Sunday (November 8) after being spotted in distress by a passer-by walking a dog.
RSPCA animal collection officer, Shirley Bradley, and three members of the Marine Mammal Rescue (MMR) were called out to assess the situation. Stephan Voight, an advanced marine mammal medic, of the MMR explained: “The rescue was led by the RSPCA but we were asked to assist because of our experience with marine mammals. The seal was spotted behind some rocks in The Bay area and it was very lethargic.
“Common seal pups are left to fend for themselves at this age and although they are quite plump after they have been weaned, they can lose weight as they learn how to feed. As they are still so young, this means they can get in trouble pretty quickly.
“When we first approached the pup, it didn’t really react to us and was exhausted. It was under-weight and we saw that its left hind flipper was swollen and had an abscess on it. If it had stayed there it would have almost certainly starved to death.
“The RSPCA transported it to their wildlife centre, and I was called out again to help restrain it as it was given a thorough examination. It was given oral fluid, anti-biotics and pain relief. After a good night’s sleep I was told it was quite feisty in the morning which is a good sign.
“It was transferred to the Mallydams Seal Sanctuary on the Mainland on Monday morning. I’m told they also have a male common seal pup of around the same age there. The seals are sociable and like company, so they will probably be both released together when they are well enough.”