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Seal spotted outside Norwich pub

PUBLISHED: 11:46 04 October 2019 | UPDATED: 16:08 04 October 2019

Ribs of Beef landlord Jonathan Power filmed the seal swimming in the River Wensum near his pub. Picture: Jonathan Power

Ribs of Beef landlord Jonathan Power filmed the seal swimming in the River Wensum near his pub. Picture: Jonathan Power

Archant

A seal with stamina found itself a long way from home at a riverside pub in the city.

The Ribs of Beef pub, Wensum Street, Norwich. 
Picture: ANTONY KELLYThe Ribs of Beef pub, Wensum Street, Norwich. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Staff and customers at the Ribs of Beef, next to Fye Bridge, were shocked on Thursday afternoon when a seal floated down the River Wensum past the outdoor terrace.

Although the Norfolk coast is home to plenty of seals, to get to Norwich it would need to travel many miles along the river network.

Liuda Grimmer, who works in the kitchen, spotted the seal at around 3.30pm and by the time she had gone to tell her colleagues it had gone to the other side of the bridge.

A seal has been spotted swimming in the River Wensum in central Norwich. Picture: Jonathan PowerA seal has been spotted swimming in the River Wensum in central Norwich. Picture: Jonathan Power

John Power, pub manager, said: "I was shocked to see a seal as people have seen them further down the river but never this far and once it went to the other side of the bridge it came back once or twice.

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"I was initially shocked but then concerned so called the RSPCA and Broads Authority and we didn't see it again after 4.30pm.

"It is the first time I have seen one in Norwich as people see otters sometimes but not seals."

Spotting the videos the Ribs of Beef posted on their Facebook page, Kevin Murphy, who runs Norfolk Wildlife Rescue, headed to the city to check it wasn't injured and advised people on Twitter not to approach the seal.

Mr Murphy said: "I wanted to make people aware to keep a safe distance as they are legally protected animals.

A seal has been spotted swimming in the River Wensum in central Norwich. Picture: Jonathan PowerA seal has been spotted swimming in the River Wensum in central Norwich. Picture: Jonathan Power

"People were saying it needed rescuing but it looked absolutely fine as they do live in water and in Cambridgshire on the River Nene they live 45 miles inland."

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A spokesman for the Broads Authority said: "A possible explanation for this seal visiting Norwich is due to the recent tides in the Broads system.

Kevin Murphy from Norfolk Wildlife Rescue Credit:  Jamie HoneywoodKevin Murphy from Norfolk Wildlife Rescue Credit: Jamie Honeywood

"Our Rangers will often see seals on their patrols of the River Yare, with sightings of a seal lounging around at Reedham a regular occurrence.

"Whilst seals are charming and exciting to watch, we would like to take this opportunity to remind the public to not approach them as they are potentially dangerous wild animals."

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