This week two rescued seals have been released back into the North Sea after treatment at Blue Reef Tynemouth’s Marine Rescue Centre.
The two seals, named Bruce and Gabrielle have been recovering from injuries for the last month and were finally well enough to be released back into the wild.
Bruce was picked up locally, underweight and with a few injuries, Gabrielle’s journey to Tynemouth was a bit more eventful.
She had a tag on her flipper from a rescue centre in Holland, who had treated and released her. She had issues with her eye and was exhausted after the long swim across the North Sea!
Unfortunately Gabrielle has lost the sight in one of her eyes, but will still be able to survive well in the wild. Seals have very sensitive whiskers which they use to detect vibrations in the water, helping them to catch fish.
After around a month of treatment, both seals were well enough to be reintroduced to the wild.
Head of Seal Rescue at Blue Reef Tynemouth, Terry McKeone said “It has been a very busy winter at our rescue centre and we are still looking after 4 seals this late in the year.”
“It is always wonderful to see the seals go off into the sea and back into the wild”
“Gabrielle has already had a lot of adventures in her young life and I’m sure there will be many more for her in the future.”
Blue Reef’s Rescue centre is made possible by visitors to the aquarium and is run by aquarium staff members and volunteers from BDMLR.
Grey seals and their close relatives, harbour seals are both commonly seen in the North Sea, but increasing numbers need the help of rescue centres such as the one at Blue Reef Tynemouth.
The Marine Rescue Centre has been very busy this winter with many seals, needing treatment. Visitors to Blue Reef Tynemouth can see these rescue seals and learn what to do if they see a seal in need of care.