Large numbers of grey seals will soon haul out on the local beaches between Horsey and Winterton to have their pups and “cute” is hardly adequate to describe a baby seal with its white furry coat and great big dark eyes and it is truly a wonderful sight to see the beach littered with mother and baby seals. Please be aware, however, that these are wild animals and should not be approached – they have a nasty bite. Also, if frightened they will abandon their babies. So if you are going to see the seals please treat them with respect and remember:
Stay a good distance away; do not go onto the beach amongst groups of seals – particularly if you have dogs with you which should always be kept securely on a lead.
If you are visiting the site at Horsey this will be monitored by Wardens from The Friends of Horsey Seals who will happily point you to a safe path along the top of the dunes with marked viewing areas giving you a good view of the seals but keeping them safe too.
If you should venture into other areas that are not covered by the Wardens please be aware that you could come across seals in the dunes, so again keep dogs on a lead and children close by. Once their pups are weaned a female seal is ready to mate again which brings the bull seals ashore and a bull seal can weigh 300 kg and be more than 3 metres long.
Facts and figures
The mother’s milk is 60% fat so pups put on 2kg of weight every day and are weaned after approximately 3 weeks when its mother will leave it. Over the next few weeks the pup will not feed but rely on the fat it has built up. It will moult is soft white coat which is not waterproof and when it gets hungry enough will make its way to the sea where it will quickly learn to feed itself.
If you’d like to know more and to see the seals for yourself, the Norfolk Wildlife Trust are organising a Seal Walk on 29th November. Please click here for details of how to book.