News / Seal pup thriving

Marley the common seal pup at Hillswick Wildlife Sanctuary. Photo HWS

SALMON workers in Shetland have rescued a common seal pup they found swimming around a feed barge in the north of the islands.

The three men came across the pup while they were working at Scottish Sea Farms’ Mangaster site, near Sullom, this week.

“It was swimming around the barge and looking up at us as if it wanted food, but there was no sign of its mother anywhere,” Cameron Jones said.

“It looked like it was about to give up and was having difficulty staying afloat so we brought it aboard,” Shaun McAlister added.

The men named the seal Marley and called Hillswick Wildlife Sanctuary, who have been looking after him ever since.

Thanking the salmon farmers, sanctuary owner Jan Bevington said: “Marley is a very lucky seal to have been saved. He couldn’t have been more than 24 hours old when they plucked him out of the water.


“He’s a good sized pup though and at present he’s thriving well.

“It feels good to have had such a positive interaction with the salmon industry, rather than feeling angry about seals being shot.”

She said that common seals were especially vulnerable, with the population in Shetland falling by around 60 per cent in the past 10 years.

“With figures like that, every pup is precious,” she said, and asked if anyone finds a seal pup they think is in trouble to get in touch with the sanctuary on 01806 503348.

People can also follow Marley’s progress on Hillswick Wildlife Sanctuary’s Facebook page.

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