A seal pup has been saved from drowning after being found buried up to its neck in sand on a beach. The young aquatic mammal was spotted by walker Rachel Rickett beneath the boulders of the sea barrage on Waxham Beach, Norfolk, on Friday, December 15. And photos revealed how just the head of the adorable grey seal was left poking out from the shoreline.
Rachel quickly contacted local charity Friends of Horsey Seals, who used shovels to dig out the stricken animal after rushing to the scene. And thankfully the pup, which was old enough to survive on its own, was then released back into the sea within a matter of minutes.
“I truly believed it was trapped too tight to be rescued but the team sprang into life like a well-oiled machine. Within minutes of their arrival, the seal was free and seemingly no worse off for its experience. Without help, the next high tide would surely drown it,” said Rachel.
Rachel had been completing her annual Waxham to Horsey walk with some photographer friends when she came across the stricken seal. She’d initially heard the cries from the juvenile animal before discovering it stuck behind the sea defenses.
“We were all trying to photograph a Purple Sandpiper when we first heard the seal’s little cries. I decided there was no way I could leave the little thing without trying to get it rescued,” said Rachel.
Rachel used an app to geolocate the seal before passing on the details to the Friends of Horsey Seals. And once they dug it out, they allowed it to make its way back to the sea as they were confident it was old enough to survive on its own. Rachel called rescuers “heroes” and said it “absolutely” made her day to see it free.
“We were shocked to see how deep it was buried. We do our best not to interfere with nature but the sea defenses are man-made and pups do get trapped in them,” said a spokesman from the Friends of Horsey Seals.
“Fortunately we carry a small spade and had to do some digging before we could lift the pup out using grabbers and anti-bite gloves. This pup is no longer dependent on its mum – it just needs to rest now,” he added.
Produced in association with SWNS Talker
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