More than a pup’s chance for Sandy Bay’s baby seal

The seal pup is transported to safety by Exploris. INLT 46-625-CON

The seal pup is transported to safety by Exploris. INLT 46-625-CON

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A sickly seal was given better than a pup’s chance of survival thanks to concerned Larne animal lovers.

At first the youngster basking in the autumn sun at Sandy Bay beach on Sunday morning, November 10 was no more than a novelty for those lucky enough to see him.

The malnourished seal pup on the beach at Sandy Bay. INLT 46-626-CON

The malnourished seal pup on the beach at Sandy Bay. INLT 46-626-CON

It was an excellent opportunity for the snappers in the Larne Through A Lens group to get up close to nature.

Word spread on facebook and even more cameras were focussed on the pup, which did little more than lift its head occasionally, as if watching those watching him (or her).

“It didn’t seem interested in going back to the sea,” said a Larne Through A Lens photographer. “And as there was very little movement from the pup, one of the people there decided to phone Exploris Aquarium.”

Just before sunset a representative from Exploris (the under-threat Portaferry aquarium which cares for sick seals) arrived.

The seal pup at Sandy Bay on Sunday.  INLT 46-631-CON

The seal pup at Sandy Bay on Sunday. INLT 46-631-CON

“He explained that the seal pup was malnourished and suffering from dehydration, and that you could tell this because of the rippling fat on the seal’s body. A healthy seal pup would be fattened out and have no ripples of fat on its body.

“With some help from the guy who phoned Exploris, they loaded the pup into a van and took it away to be nursed back to health before being returned to the wild again,” he added.

No doubt, if it could, the patient would give kindly Larne folk a seal of approval.