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


2005-10-03 10:52:09

Another pup rescued from St Agnes, Cornwall

On the morning of October 3rd, Coordinator Dave Jarvis had a call from Johnathan Smith at the Cornwall Wildlife Trust’s Strandings Network about a grey seal pup at Trevaunance Cove, St Agnes. After loading the cage into the car and picking up Coordinator Tim Bain, Dave drove up to St Agnes to check on the pup, also calling upon Sussex Coordinator Sharon Gisby and Advanced Medic Stephen Marsh who happened to be down here at the time training at the National Seal Sanctuary.

The pup had been found by volunteers ( Sally & Caroline Farrell ) from BTCV (British Trust for Conservation Volunteers) doing a beach clean who were being filmed by Westcountry Live. The pup was assessed by Dave Jarvis and found to be a bit underweight, covered with bites, but the most obvious problem was a ruptured eye with yellow pus coming from it. Relaying the information to the Sanctuary, the pup was then uplifted and taken directly to Medic and expert seal veterinarian Paul Riley at his practice in Helston. Animal Care Assistant Marianne Fellows from the Sanctuary joined Dave and Tim at the practice, and helped with Paul’s assessment of the injured eye.

Whilst there, Dave had a call from Animal Care Assistant Claire Baker at the Seal Sanctuary about another pup, a whitecoat this time, at [click to enlarge] Strangles beach, Crackington Haven, in the North of the County, which had been moved by a member of the public, therefore breaking the maternal bond. Dave called Sue White at Head Office to request mobilisation of Medics from the North Cornwall group. Also realising that by this time Sharon and Stephen would probably be near the Devon border on their way home to Sussex, Dave also contacted them to see if it would be possible to divert to this new incident, which they thankfully did.

Following on from the diagnosis from Paul, Dave and Tim then transported the animal now known as ‘Tusker’ (the theme for seal names this year is alcoholic!), to the Sanctuary, where they were met by the Animal Care Team, and then collected a fresh cage and set off for Crackington Haven since the other Medics did not have any equipment. En route, they received a further message from the Sanctuary stating that the pup had now been allowed to go back into the water. Sue White advised that Medic Mike Buckingham had agreed to attend and had met up with Sharon and Stephen at the site. They searched the area, maintaining contact with Dave and Tim as they travelled to the site, and Stephen advised that he had seen a pup in the water, although possibly not the one that they were looking for.

Upon arrival, Dave and Tim relieved Sharon and Stephen so that they could continue back to Sussex, and remained there until 6pm until the tide turned, but without success.

Medic Dan Jarvis
BDMLR West Cornwall
(Newquay - Land's End - St Austell)

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