Sunday 22 September 2019

'He looked in a bad way' - three young women rescue stranded seal pup on beach

Silky, the three-month-old baby seal, rests after he was found on the beach
Silky, the three-month-old baby seal, rests after he was found on the beach
Mission: Silky’s rescuers carry the stricken seal pup to be treated by a vet
Laura Lynott

Laura Lynott

Three young women have rescued a seal pup stranded on a Co Donegal beach.

The three-month-old seal, who has been named Silky, was spotted by several members of the public on Tullan Strand, Bundoran.

After searching the 3km stretch for several hours on Saturday and yesterday, twin sisters Phillipa and Jennifer Locke (20) and their friend, Rihannon Kerrigan (20), found the weak pup lying close to the edge of the beach, about to be swept up by the waves.

Phillipa, a Seal Rescue Ireland volunteer, said: "We had been looking for him on Saturday and I saw his tracks then yesterday morning.

"He was just lying there on the beach and looked in a bad way, very weak and small for his age.

"He was trying to swim against the sea. He'd been there a few days, maybe three days and he's only three months old.

"His mother might still be around as there were tracks from a bigger seal too but she probably got swept up by the waves."

The young women wrapped the pup up in towels and lifted him into a box, carrying him along the beach. Three surfers helped them carry Silky to safety.

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The seal was last night being treated by a local vet.

Phillipa asked anyone who spots seals that appear stranded to contact Seal Rescue Ireland.

She advised against trying to get seals to return back to sea as they may get lost and not survive.

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