If it is ALIVE; STAY AWAY, for several reasons;
1, If it is a pup, its mother may be close by, out of sight but close by! Your intervention may result in the mother leaving the seal pup to die a long drawn out death of de-hydration and emaciation.
2, It might just bite you!
3, It is possible that it may have a disease, or other un-wanted hosts.
4, Be especially careful with dogs, both for the welfare of the seal and your dog!
If you can return within 24 hours, and it is still in the same position with no sign of mum, and looking disturbed, not well, thin and unable to fend for itself; please call the following:
• Scottish Marine Animal Stranding Hotline (SAC) 01463 243030
• Scottish Society for the Protection of Cruelty to Animals (SSPCA) 03000 999 999
• British Divers Marine Life Rescue (BDMLR) 01825 765 546 (out of hours: 07787 433412)
If it is dead
1, Does it have any sign of injury, bullet holes, smashed skull or gaping wounds?
Call the police
2, Does it have signs of mucus/bodily fluids discharging from its mouth and/or eyes?
Call the Scottish Agricultural Centre (Veterinary Investigation) on 01463 243 030
Provide Information: (take pictures on your phone or camera)
If you can please provide the following information:
What it is (if you know), and
how big it is,
Its location (add a GPS or Grid position if you can)
How fresh it is; very fresh could be mistaken for sleeping to decomposed, which could be air bloated, and smelly to a pile of bones.
REMEMBER: Seals, Cetaceans (whales, dolphins and porpoise) and Otters are WILD ANIMALS; when alive they can bite, when dead and partly decomposed they have been known to explode!
Marine Mammals may carry diseases which ARE TRANSFERABLE to HUMANS & DOGS!
They can be very heavy and may require experts to move them.
If you have handled any marine mammal dead or alive: WASH THOROUGHLY!
If it is not urgent you may prefer to contact Marine Concern who would be happy to pass on your information to the relevant authorities, and/or give you the information that you need. If you encounter problems whilst trying to report a dead marine animal or an animal in distress please contact Marine Concern.
Marine Concern is also interested to hear about any emergency issues on mobile 07768 924 841 or online at www.marineconcern.com where the website LINKS page has all of the contacts that you will need!
Thank you for taking the time to care!
Courtesy of Mark Carter of Marine Concern.