Do you know what to do if you find a seal pup on one of Norfolk’s beaches?
- Credit: Archant
Experts at Hunstanton Sea Life Sanctuary say this is what to do if you find what appears to be an abandoned seal pup.
Do not touch
Most importantly, do not touch the seal or let any dogs approach it. If the mother returns and smells any animal scent which isn't her own on the pup, she will abandon it immediately, even if it is perfectly healthy.
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Seal mothers will leave their pups on the beach for four to six hours at a time while they hunt, so it is worth revisiting the pup, or calling an animal rescue organisation or Sea Life Hunstanton, who can check on the pup.
Beware of danger
Seals are born with very sharp teeth. Whilst they look cute, they are still wild animals that can become aggressive, and anyone who approaches is at risk of getting bitten.
Sometimes a pup may be clearly sick, injured, or underweight. If that is the case, call the Hunstanton sanctuary for advice, who will pick up the pup and provide it with necessary care. The number is 01485 533576.
It may be that the pup is in a dangerous location, such as busy harbours or beaches. If this is the case the mother may be too afraid to return because of the level of human activity surrounding it. When contacting an organisation please take note of key landmarks or use GPS location when possible to identify the location of the animal which will help the team find the seal quickly.