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


2008-10-12 15:27:17

Year old seal rescued in Bude, Cornwall

Seal pupAt 9.00hrs, Cornwall Coordinator Dave Jarvis received a call from the National Seal Sanctuary regarding a seal hauled out above the high water mark at Duckpool, Bude. He called out Medics Sue Gear and Jeff Horst to get to the seal quickly and assess it while he made his way up with Medics Lesley and Dan Jarvis with the seal cage.

A short time later, Sue called back to say that she and Jeff had located the seal on a mud bank in a natural pool at the top of the beach and noted that it appeared to be thin and very tired. She agreed that they would remain on site and help to keep the public at bay until Dave and the others arrived.

When they got there, Sue and Jeff showed them where the seal was and commented that they had seen the seal drinking – a clear sign of dehydration, so Dan went around the other side of the pool with Jeff and his son to get across to where it was lying, getting very muddy in the process! When it was jumped, the seal put up little resistance and was caged up and taken back across the mud bank, where everyone got even muddier, and then back across the stream to the car park for assessment. It was found the seal had a good set of large teeth, so was certainly around one year old, but was still obviously malnourished due to the prominent hip bones and neck line. It was determined to be a male, with a slightly high temperature, a slice to the tip of one of its rear flippers that had almost cut completely through, noticeable pitting and small amount of oedema in the right eye and a couple of other minor injuries to the body. After this the animal was tube fed rehydration fluids and weighed, coming in at 28kg.

This information was relayed to the National Seal Sanctuary, who agreed that they would take it on, but to also check with Wildlife Supervisor Shawn Clements at RSPCA West Hatch as they currently had no seals in and our seal at Duckpool was approximately the same travelling distance from both centres. Shawn accepted the offer to take on the seal, so Dave, Lesley and Dan transported it there for care.

Dave Jarvis
Director and Cornwall Area Coordinator
British Divers Marine Life Rescue