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Happy day as seal treated at East Winch centre is released

17:02 10 January 2014

The East Winch RSPCA Wildlife Centre. Picture: Ian Burt.

The East Winch RSPCA Wildlife Centre. Picture: Ian Burt.

Archant © 2011

A seal rescued by the RSPCA after a fishing net got caught around her neck has been successfully released back into the wild.

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The female adult grey seal, named Queen Size by staff because of her size, was found on a beach in Bacton in October in an extremely emaciated, dehydrated and weak state.

After treatment and care at the charity’s East Winch Wildlife centre near King’s Lynn Queen Size made a full recovery, but is left with large scars around her neck where the netting cut into it.

As she is such a large animal special measures had to be put in place for her release.

Centre manager Alison Charles said: “We had to borrow a horse box from World Horse Welfare to transport her down to the water because she would not fit properly in our usual vans.

“We also had to coax her out of her pool with mackerel as she is just too enormous for us to lift out as we normally do.

“It was a bit tricky at times because of these difficulties but all went well in the end and it was so lovely to see her swimming away in the sea again – where she belongs.

“There are scars around her neck showing the ordeal she went through but they will improve with time.

“We are very grateful to World Horse Welfare for lending us the horse box. I just don’t know how we would have got our large lady back to the sea without their generous help.”

The adult seal spent some weeks in intensive care where she was given pain relief, antibiotics and fluids and fish soup by stomach tube. Her wounds were bathed in salt water until they healed and she was then rehabilitated through a series of outdoor pools to get her ready for life back in the sea.

The centre has been dealing with more than 100 seal pups which have been washed up after the tidal surge in December and Queen Size’s release should free up much needed space.

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