British Divers Marine Life Rescue
British Divers Marine Life Rescue (photo: Steve Marsh)
British Divers Marine Rescue


2007-03-11 14:19:54

Two seals at Spurn Point

We received a call on Sunday 11th March from the Spurn Point Ranger that there were two seals that needed to be looked at, one at Spurn Point and one on the beach in front of the Pub in Kilnsea. We went to Spurn first where there was a seal laying well up on the sand, not very responsive, one eye shut. Two walkers told us that they saw her approximately four hours earlier and that she has been there at least since early morning. There were quite a few people around and some dogs. In fact that part of the beach is not protected as a 'nature reserve'.

We relocated the seal further up the Point after having taken the advice of the ranger. The seal hesitated to leave the kennel, quite strange! She really did not want to move. Once on the sand she laid and continued to sleep. We left her while we decided to go and assess the other one, as it was already 4pm. Once we arrived at the rocks we saw a beautiful, alert, fightish seal who kept all of us at bay and at distance. We stood back watching her while she decided to go back towards the water and started to slide on the mud (Pingu-like when he plays about on the ice!). It was low tide, but she kept going strongly and effortlessly. We went back to the first seal and watched for a while; we then decided to re-assess the situation in the morning.

We were back on the beach by 9 am. The seal was lying in the same location away from the water, quite lethargic, eye shut. We started to get worried because she was not reacting to our voices or movements, she did an 'orange poo' and we were told that it could be a sign of dehydration. Despite our concerns the 'sleepy seal' did respond as soon as she saw the kennel in front of her!! Seals must have good memories I said! And she did not go quietly in the kennel ....but Joel had a firm grip. Alan (co-ordinator) contacted the Seal Life Centre in Scarborough and we were on our way. Joel was able to delay his journey to Newark for work as I did not fancy a four hours round trip on my own. "Not the best example of British road work is the road to Scarborough" I say! I must admit she did smell terribly in the car, despite the open windows.

At the Centre the seal looked exhausted but fought all the workers. Despite the body mass looking round some rolls of skin were visible on the neck. The seal turned up to be a male, 21 kg, infested with worms. They were everywhere, but luckily enough not in the lungs yet. So after a few injections and a forced feed, 'Pineapple Chunk' was left to rest in the isolation ward. He should be able to make a quick recovery and to be released once ready to go.

Thanks everybody who helped.

Joel and Freddie Taylor
East Yorkshire Medics