Submitted by Steve on 09:21, 18th Jan, 2016 | 0

On Saturday the GSPCA rescued the first sick seal pup in nearly 2 years.

After what was a fairly mild Winter last year many birds and animals have had a much harder season this year with dozens of oiled sea birds being rescued over the last few weeks.

Geoff George Animal Collection Officer was called out on Saturday to what was reported to be a seal pup at Corbier.

When Geoff arrived at the scene he was faced with a steep climb and without doubt one of the thinnest pups we have ever rescued.

Geoff made his way to the pup down the steep cliff face and quickly restrained the very ill pup and he then transported the pup to the GSPCA Wildlife Unit.

The 7 to 10 day old pup should be over 40kg, but unfortunately is just over 14kg which is a third of what she should weigh.

Not only is the grey seal pup extremely thin it has been battered on the rocks, likely separated for some time from its mother and very de-hydrated.

The very sick and poorly pup has been given re-hydration fluids and is under a heat lamp in our seal facility, but the team are very worried and every one has their fingers crossed.

Staff at the Shelter have been working around the clock to care for the seal pup to help ensure the pup survives.

Geoff George ACO said "This bad weather really hasn't helped our seal population around the Bailiwick and this is the first casualty but we have been out to check other seals."

'"It's been non stop here the last few days at the Shelter rescuing wildlife and birds, but its what we are here for."

"We have to tube feed the very ill seal pup every two hours or so through the night, if not over the next few days for any chance of survival."

"We have called the pup 'Bonnie' but it is a long way off being fit enough to go back to the wild."

Steve Byrne GSPCA Manager said "Geoff did an amazing job on Saturday rescuing the very sick grey seal pup and thank you to Danni who went along and got a few pictures."

"Bonnie has made it through the first 36 hours but is still extremely weak and we are all hoping and doing our best to help this very weak pup survive."

"We are appealing for donations towards their care so we can get Bonnie fit enough to be released back to the wild."

"The donations go towards the care and the special medications needed for a very sick seal pup."

"Thank you to everyone who has donated so far it is really appreciated."

"Over the past few years we have rescued, cared for and released 4 seal pups and when we released the last two we actually saw the two we had released the year before."

""It can take a few months to get a sick seal pup ready to be released although we are concentrating on the next few hours at present.

To donate to Bonnie please call 01481 257261, pop along to the Animal Shelter in St Andrews, by post or by clicking the link below.

We will of course keep you up to date with Bonnie's progress and keep your eyes open for pictures and videos.

If anyone see's a pup with or without a mum we really do appreciate a call so that we are aware of its location and condition but here is some advice.

A healthy pup looks like a big, stuffed maggot without a neck. However, a thin pup looks sleek (but not bony) and has a visible neck, like a healthy dog.

PLEASE DO NOT TOUCH THE SEAL. They can give a nasty bite, which will become infected by bacteria that live in a seal’s mouths.

Note: Do not allow dogs or other animals to harass a seal.

If a Seal is scared back into the water, it could then be washed out to sea by strong currents and be lost. You should not put a seal pup back in the sea as it may get into difficulty.

If a Seal pup is sick, thin or injured then we would ask you to contact the GSPCA immediately on 01481 257261 day or night

When reporting an injured, sick or abandoned seal to the GSPCA, please make sure you are able to supply the following information:

  • Exact location; nearest town / village
  • Position on the beach, and state of the tide
  • How long you have observed the pup; any disturbance / risk to it; whether the mother has been seen
  • Any wounds / obvious signs of illness
  • Length/colour/condition.

Caution:- Handling of any animal either domestic, wild, dead or alive may be potentially hazardous. Obvious dangers include bites, scratches and general hygiene issues. Common sense should be applied in all instances and, if unsure, seek additional advice or assistance. Personal hygiene should be taken into consideration after handling any animal, whether it’s domestic, wild, dead or alive.

To see some of the previous stories follow the links below

Seal Rescue to Save Jethou Bumblebee 25th November 2012

Hanois the grey seal pup rescued on Saturday by GSPCA staff 7th January 2013

Jethou Bumblebee & Hanois the rescued grey seal pups back in the wild 18th April 2013

The Rescue of Trinity the Seal Pup 9th January 2014

Extremely sick and weak Grey Seal Pup rescued at Corbier now at the GSPCA

Posted by GSPCA on Monday, 18 January 2016

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