Posts Tagged ‘Grey Seals




Some higher than normal tides during the middle of the month gave the opportunity for some great photography out in Blakeney Harbour. The Grey Seals are beginning to gather for the winter pupping season and the tides push them onto concentrated herds on low sandbanks.

As we sailed close to one of the groups I picked out one young bull that looked quite chilled out. I caught him mid yawn. Not sure I would want to be on the receiving end of those gnashers!


Grey Seal



Not as bad as we thought

It’s pleasing to know that the storm surge did not affect the Grey Seal pups as much as initially thought. Plenty still left on the beaches and occasionally one wanders into one of the car parks.

Grey Seal Pup



Keep your distance

At the weekend we visited the coast and came across several young seals; not pups, but still young enough to be dependent on their mothers for some tuition. Over the past few years the wardens have told me pups are being born earlier and later in the season. Maybe this is due to milder winters. I don’t know. What it means is that young seals are on the beach for longer. One in particular we saw was hiding in among rocks but was attracting more than its fair share of attention from passers-by.

The cameras in mobile phones have just got better and better. I see many people now using them and the results are good high quality photographs. They are however no substitution for a long lens when it comes down to wildlife. Mobile phones will not give quality photos on zoom setting therefore to get frame filling photos you would need to get close. Ensuring you keep a reasonable distance from any animal or bird is paramount. The way to do it is to let your subject come to you; letting them do that as a matter of their choice is the way to get a photograph with no harm or distress to your subject. This of course takes time and patience.

Some obviously do not have the time or the patience. Many passers-by respected the young seal at the weekend and viewed and photographed it from a reasonable distance. One particular mother however despite my very loud and definitive protestations let her children almost crawl all over the animal.

Approaching a seal and causing it obvious distress by poking a mobile phone in its face is just unacceptable.

How not to view Grey Seals


Natures rich Milk

Walking down the beach at the weekend I was surprised at the number of Grey Seal pups – already well over 500 at one of the rookeries.

Although the northerly was screaming off the sea and nipping at our faces, pups were littered along the beach sleeping. When they weren’t sleeping they were feeding. One particular mother was shielding her young from the skin shearing sand that was filling the racing air up to half a metre above the beach. The pup fed until it had its fill or perhaps she tired and needed a break. With such rich milk some of the youngsters were already quite round. After three weeks from birth they will be 35kg heavier and will be learning to find food for themselves.

Grey Seal Mother & Pup 1

Click eo enlarge



As we walked along the beach earlier this month we noticed something sad.

Counting the Grey Seals hauled up on the sand it became apparent several had injuries. At least two had fishing net around their necks and others bore scars of net cutting wounds. No doubt these were the price of an easy meal. I wonder how many more paid a heavier cost and haven’t survived?

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Jun 2023


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