Monday, 7 January 2013

Seal pups, scats, tags and a digger

Here is a quick summary of the various things that happened over the festive period, starting with seals.

The seal pups have virtually just finished with only 6 being born since Boxing Day, bringing the total count to 1220. Most have left the beach and have started to form the normal colony at the tip of the Point. Eddie counted dead pups which numbered 53 meaning that there has been just a 5% mortality rate.

Both seals we took before Christmas to RSPCA East Winch are faring well. Lion King (nasty gash) is still in isolation and Prince Albert despite having a bad eye is progressing well.

On the 4th Graham & Eddie spotted this bull seal adorned with a satellite tag. It was tagged in France last summer and although its the first time we have seen it amongst the hundreds out there, we have since found out it has been here since the 8th December.

Less glamorous, today Eddie & Graham collected seal scat at the request of the Sea Mammal Research Unit based in Scotland. This involves scanning above the high tide mark and when a collection is made, noting the date, grid reference and number. We will be able to provide an update about what the scats contain in March but today we collected 46.

 Any good captions?

Last night the Time Team dig that took place at Branodunum Roman Fort last August was aired on Channel 4. If you missed it here is the link:

Everyone seemed super-impressed by the condition of the site and the amount of finds, and they were really pleased with the geophys that showed buildings we didn't even know were there. There is too much to mention here so do take a look!

Today on Blakeney Freshmarsh our annual ditch clearing work has started to de-silt them to enable water flow. We are working on a 10-year rotation to provide a range of different ditch conditions across the site. As well as clearing the ditches, the digger operator spreads the spoil as evenly as possible to allow our other management e.g. topping to take place. As we share boundaries between the 8 other landowners on Blakeney Freshes we share costs and time it to take place in one go.

 Lots of slubbings coming out of this ditch

Victoria, Countryside Manager


  1. Here's a caption for you Victoria:-
    After closely examining the evidence, Eddie "Sherlock" Stubbings thinks to himself "There must be some seals around here somewhere".
    Sorry Eddie!!
    (Two "fans" from Downham Market).

  2. Lets be clear - a scat = a pooh.
    And the TV programmes very rarely (ever?) show this key (& universal) bit of animal behaviour !