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More seals to be returned to the wild, following treatment at Hunstanton sea life sanctuary

Five seals are being released into the sea next week: Pictures supplied

Five seals are being released into the sea next week: Pictures supplied

Archant

A second batch of seals is to be released back to the sea after being rescued and then treated at a west Norfolk sanctuary.

The busiest year of seal rescue in the history of Hunstanton Sea Life Sanctuary saw it respond to more than 50 emergency calls and take a total of 37 seals into its care.

Five seals will be released – Magnum, Solero, Haribo, Twister and Cornetto – from Snettisham beach at 10am on Monday, enabling them to have another chance of life in the wild.

Sanctuary general manager Nigel Croasdale said: “It’s been an unbelievably busy summer for us, with both our indoor hospital and outdoor convalescence pool more crowded than they have ever been before.

“It will be a bittersweet moment when the five seals head off into the surf, but that is what the team works to achieve and it is always a satisfying 
moment to see them all swim off into the sea.”

The first two rescued seals, Hemera and Artemis, were released last month, and with more youngsters reaching their target weight, five more can be released in one go.

Magnum was the first seal of the summer pupping season to be rescued from a local beach at Heacham. He had lost his mother when only a couple of days old 
and would not have survived without the help of the sanctuary rescue team.

Animal care expert Natalie Emmerson said: “The release will be a particularly emotional experience for me. Magnum has always been my favourite little boy ever since first rescuing him back on June 11.”

The sanctuary’s animal care team has estimated it has travelled about 1,147 miles on rescue missions since March. The longest single journey was a 141-mile return trip to pick up a pup, subsequently christened Mint Choc Chip, from Hemsby.

Have you got an animal story for us? Email david.bale2@archant.co.uk

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