We are reminding the public to be #WildlifeWISE as pup season continues for Scotland’s grey seals.
We were called out on January 3 to a seal pup in Aberdeen who members of the public were concerned was in distress or even dead. In fact, the pup was just having a snooze!
Scottish SPCA animal rescue officer, Debbie Gibson, said: “This seal had completed its moult and had a dark coat. It looked to be a perfectly healthy, chubby seal pup.”
“It is not uncommon to see seals on beaches at this time of year, as they will come ashore to moult their fur, for much needed rest, or to digest their food.”
Our National Wildlife Rescue Centre is currently caring for a high number of seals and we are keen to avoid any coming in to our care unnecessarily.
If you are concerned about a seal, please take the following steps to ensure you’re being #WildlifeWISE:
- Never approach a seal on land and discourage others from doing the same. Put dogs on a lead and do not allow them to approach the animal either. Remember, although they look cute and cuddly, seals are wild animals and can inflict a nasty bite when scared or in pain!
- If you find a seal pup on shore, please check on the pup regularly over the course of 24 hours. If no mother seal has been seen in within this period, please call our helpline. Make sure to take extra care to keep your distance from the pup as the mother will not come ashore if there are people in the vicinity and this could lead to her abandoning her baby.
- If the seal is obviously injured or appears sick (difficulty breathing, emaciated, lethargic etc.) call our helpline immediately.
- Don’t try and put a seal you’ve found on land back in the water or move it elsewhere. It’s normal for seals to spend time on land and if the animal is injured or sick it may be out of the water for good reason.
Anyone who has concerns about an animal or wants to report an animal in distress should call our animal helpline on 03000 999 999.