Submitted by Steve on 15:48, 8th Nov, 2018 | 0

This lunch time the youngest grey seal pup to arrive at the GSPCA in many years arrived from Jersey.

Andrew as the pup has been named still has his white fluffy coat which is lost at 14 days of age, making him around 7-12 days old and at only 17kg he is painfully thin.

New marine mammal medic Martine Venton-Heys who helped with the rescue in Jersey yesterday accompanied Andrew who is being shown around the GSPCA while she waits for her flight back to Jersey thanks to Blue Island who helped provide the transport needed.

Andrew spent the evening at New Era Vets and local Vet and GSPCA President John Knight is on route to give the sick seal pup a full health check and we all have our fingers and toes crossed he hasn’t any serious underlying injuries or illness.

Donna de Gruchy from BDMLR Jersey said " New Era Vet Hospital have done a wonderful job keeping the seal pup comfortable over night and now it is time to settle him in the GSPCA.”

“We have a couple of options for getting a seal pup (named Andrew) off island, and are really grateful that Blue Islands are able to help this time, once again, especially considering how stormy and windy it is at the moment.”

“It takes a lot of behind the scenes organisation for them to help us and we really appreciate the assistance yet again."

Steve Byrne GSPCA Manager said “Geoff popped along this lunch time to collect Andrew the grey seal pup who is extremely thin and the youngest pup we have had in many years.”

“He should be close to 40kgs but is a painfully thin 17kg so would have really struggled to survive if he hadn’t been rescued.”

"It is wonderful to be working with the great Jersey BDMLR team once again and they have done a great job with New Era caring for Andrew in his first 24 hours but he has a long road to full health."

Geoff George Animal Collection Officer and main carer for Seals at the GSPCA said "Grey Seal Pups are often born from the end of October around the Bailiwick of Guernsey and we like to let the public know what to do if they see one."

"With bad weather seal pups can often get separated from their Mother during their first few days of life which is crucial to help with their development."

“This is what has likely happened with Andrew after the stormy weather we have recently had.”

“Andrew is now in our seal intensive care room and will require special fluids every 2 hours day and night if he is to survive.”

“We haven’t had a white coated grey seal pup for many years making him the youngest we have had for a very long time.”

"If anyone spots a seal pup healthy or not we urge people not to approach them and to give us a call on 257261."

Steve Byrne continued "It is always hard to rescue and rehabilitate seals which are so weak, but every year in the last six years we have rescued 1 or 2 and cared for them and got them back to the wild, although taking months of care and treatment."

"A healthy grey seal pup should look like a fat sausage and you shouldn't be able to the a neck, but if in doubt please send a picture in or give us a call."

"Last year we rescued Temperance the thinnest grey seal pup to come into our care which was found at Beaucette."

“Earlier this year Temperance was released back in the wild on Jethou thanks to Rib Voyages.”

“Last year we helped Jersey with Sami the seal pup who was released back in Jersey waters and we all have our fingers crossed for Andrew.”

"Often healthy seal pups will have their Mother watching them from out at sea and it is people that has scared them off, so please do keep your distance and your dogs under control."

"Only recently have wildlife enthusiasts been highlighting the dangers of dogs on the shores to birds and over the next few months seal pups will also have a possible presence, so please do take care and keep them a safe distance."

“We are currently desperately low on blankets and towels and if anyone is clearing out their cupboards please do drop them into the GSPCA as Andrew and the 500+ animals at the GSPCA are in real need for their bedding to helping handle them.”

“We have recently launched our Buy a Brick campaign to build a new Wildlife Hospital and to find out more please check out our leaflet or drop me a line.”

To download the Buy a Brick leaflet please click here .

To learn more about our biggest project, become an Exclusive Build Partner and support our Wildlife Hospital please visit

Every Autumn the shores of the Bailiwick see grey seal pups being born.

The earliest grey seal pup we have rescued in recent years was Temperance who was found during the last week of October last year.

In recent years every winter the GSPCA have helped rescue and care for grey seal pups.

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 about seals please click here.

Some grey seal facts -

Population numbers since 1960s have doubled

  • A grey seal pup weighs 14kg at birth
  • A grey seal pup mothers milk contains 60% fat
  • Grey seals can dive to a depth of 70m
  • Another name for a grey seal is the horsehead seal
  • Grey seals are found in the waters surrounding Europe, Russia, North America, and Channel Islands
  • Grey seals can be found in estuaries, inter tidal zones, brackish water, polar and shallow seas
  • There are 18 known species of seal in the world



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To find out more on trips, talks and our education work please email [email protected] or call 01481 257261

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On Tuesday 4th December we have a volunteer induction evening and for more information and additional induction dates please visit or call 257261

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To learn more about our biggest project, become an Exclusive Build Partner and support our Wildlife Hospital please visit

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