Monday, 9 April 2012

Seal Pup

The grey seal pup seemed intrigued but not frightened by the flock of starlings that descended all around him on the high tide-line. The birds came to feed on kelp-fly larvae in the seaweed. The pup was stranded, as grey seals can't swim until they're a month old.
 I made this monoprint in the winter after visiting the seal breeding-colony on Oronsay in October. The island is a Site of Special Scientific Interest for this seal (as well as chough and corncrake), and up to 1000 pups are born here each season. Unlike the smaller common seal which feeds in shallow water around the coast, satellite tagging of grey seals from Oronsay has shown that they travel as far as Ireland and to the edge of the continental shelf for food.

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