I recieved a call this afternoon from BDMLR as someone had reported a pup in distress at a local cove. There had been a big fat weaned pup still with its white coat only a few days ago and I was very worried it was in difficulties.
Once I arrived at the cove it became clear there was a much smaller different pup there who looked from its umbilicas to be between 3 - 6 days old. I climbed down to assess the little creature who lay quite still on the beach. It is imortant to observe theses pups from a distance and where possible not go down to the beach altogether. However I wanted to be sure it was ok so hid behind a boulder and used camera zoom to take a closer look.
The pup seemed fine with no injuries, my main concern being the tide line it had chosen to lay in was littered with plastic debris. I felt very upset watching the little seal curl up on a plastic bag surrounded by bottles, netting and other items which could potentially harm many types of wildlife.
As I hid I spotted a female seal watching off the beach so quietly snuck back to the cliff top to observe her behavior. She was continually looking back at the beach some times swimming into the breakers to get a better view. This is what you would expect a mum to do but for confirmation I hooed she would haul out and feed the pup.
Unfortunately this is as far as she got and very quickly turned and charged back into the sea to resume her watch from a distance. I am very very sure she is mum but to be certain I will go back tomorrow to hopefully see her feed the little pup.
Some of the folks from the seal sanctuary joined me a little later and agreed it was best to leave them to it and come back tomorrow.