Surveying seals at South Walney

Seal survey form

I finally visited what, in my experience, has been one of our most talked about reserves: South Walney.

I went with marine trainees Amy and Georgie to do a survey of grey seals. Due to a miscommunication regarding the keys to the truck, we had to do some exciting off-roading in the Trust’s Citroen Berlingo so started a bit later than planned!

The survey involved counting the number of males, females and juveniles in and out of the water every ten minutes, then noting any behaviour such as aggression, vocalising, moving from land to sea etc.

The marine trainees leave in January which is really sad and also means that Isaac and I will be taking over a lot their responsibilities, such as these seals surveys, so this means less staring at and being amazed by the (surprisingly stinky) seals and more surveying and writing!

Seals at South Walney 2017

Seals at South Walney 2017

About the authors: Sian and Isaac were Apprentice Conservation Officers with the Trust from September 2016 to spring 2018