Posted by: Steve | April 20, 2013

Grey seal pup at Boulmer

What a fantastic morning!

It’s been a long,  l  o  n  g     w  i  n  t  e  r, and it was so good to feel the warmth of the sun for the first time in 2013. I’ve just finished a large database project, so a long walk along the Northumberland coast sounded like the ideal way to clear all the leftover queries and tables from my aching head.

Leaving Dawn and Lynne in an Alnmouth tea-shop I launched Henry, our crazy cocker spaniel, North, up the beach towards Boulmer. The sea was clear and calm, with brilliant-white breakers frothing on the rising tide.

There was plenty of wildlife to be seen: eider  ducks, grey heron, and the first house-martins of the year, swooping around the cottages at Boulmer.

Henry and I were both very surprised to find this little chap sunbathing among the rocks near Boulmer.


The grey seal pup looked fit and well-fed, and didn’t mind having her photograph taken at all. After a few minutes she became very relaxed: stretching, scratching and basking in the sunshine.

Seal Pup 2

My first instinct was to try and ‘rescue’ her, but I remembered that the advice in this situation is to leave the pup alone, then check the location after 24 hours to see if it is actually injured or sick.

I’ll go back to the spot tomorrow, but I’m hoping that she’ll have taken advantage of the high tide, and calm sea to swim back to her home on one of the local islands. 

Seal pup 3

Update, 21/04/2013

Bad news – we checked on the pup this morning. She’s still there, but she doesn’t look very well at all. I’ve been in touch with the British Divers Marine Life Rescue Team they’re sending their guys out to help later today. Hope she makes it!

Update, 22/04/2013

The BDMLR team took a look at the pup yesterday afternoon. The feedback I was given was the she was reasonably well and active. They decided to leave her on the beach for a little while longer, and see how things progressed. When I visited the spot this morning (Monday) there was no trace of the pup, so it looks like she’s made it back out to sea.

I rang my report into the BDMLR, and they seemed quite happy with that news. I’m advised that she may return to the same spot again if she’s finding food and shelter in the area. We’ll certainly be watching out for her over the next week or so.


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