Yesterday I went out to assess a young 3 week old pup that had an infected eye but otherwise looked ok ie. it was fairly plump with no obvious signs of injury.
I spent some time near it looking out to sea for signs of its mother and talking to walkers about it and the colony in general as well as easy things people can do to not cause any disturbance e.g not walking through the colony as this can cause seals to enter the territories of others potentially leading to fights or pups being in danger of aggressive adults.
All things considered, I decided to monitor the pup over the next day. When we do this we put a bollard near it to let any walkers know that we are aware of it and also to give the pup some space.With an increasing population it is not unusual for a pup to turn up perfectly healthy in a location away from the main colony and rest on the beach whilst its mother is out feeding.
The pup is in the background in this pic
I went back to the check on the pup today and it was still in the same location without a mother and following the advice fo the RSPCA East Winch hospital staff I took it to them. As it is 3 weeks old it was in heavy moult (most of it in the landrover!) and I was amazed at how different the coat looked in just a few hours. Here it is in the bay ready to be checked by the vet.
The pup has a companion, Queen Victoria (all pups are named with a royalty theme), that was brought into the hospital yesterday and was only a few days old as it still had its umbilical cord. Any guesses on what this one, that weighed 11.05kgs so about a third of the weight that is needed before release, will be called if it is a male?
Looks like it will be herring soup for Christmas lunch!