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20 December, 2018

SNH reminder: how to enjoy watching the Ythan seals without disturbing them

SNH reminder: how to enjoy watching the Ythan seals without disturbing them: Seals-103

Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) is reminding people not to get too close to seals on the Ythan at Forvie National Nature Reserve.

Annabel Drysdale, SNH’s Forvie nature reserve manager, said:

“If you fancy a beach walk at Forvie over Christmas, please go to the beach at Newburgh on the south side of the estuary to view seals. From there, you can enjoy the best views and won’t risk disturbing them while they haul out.

“We all love to watch wildlife, but we also need to protect it. If you come across seals on the beach, stay at least 150 metres away and if one or two heads come up, that means you’re close enough.”

“Young seals are now beginning to appear all around on Scotland’s coast and while they learn to feed themselves it’s important to let them rest as much as possible.

Here are a few more tips to watch seals safely and responsibly:

  • When watching seals on the beach, be quiet, avoid sudden movements and be responsive to their behaviour. Back off if it looks like the seals may enter the water.
  • Be especially cautious if there are pups present; seals can move surprisingly quickly and they may bite if they feel threatened. Never separate pups from mothers, as females can be particularly aggressive when they have young. Leave lone pups alone: the mother may only be away foraging for food and if you approach or touch the pup while she is gone she may abandon it on her return. 
  • Don’t crowd or encircle seals. If you are in a group, keep the whole group to one side of the animal, preferably the landward side, so that the animal still has access to the water.  

ENDS

 MEDIA QUERIES

Contact SNH media officer, Vicki Mowat, on 0131 316 2659 or vicki.mowat@snh.gov.uk (Tuesday to Friday) or the SNH main press office on 0131 316 2655 (Monday).

 

Contact information

Name
SNH Media
Email
SNHMEDIA@nature.scot

Notes to editors

Forvie National Nature Reserve is one of about 45 NNRs in Scotland. NNRs are special places that look after some of the best of Scotland’s nature on behalf of everyone who lives or visits Scotland, and they provide unique opportunities to visit, enjoy and learn more about Scotland’s nature. For more information, see www.nnr-scotland.org.uk .

Scottish Natural Heritage is the government's adviser on all aspects of nature and landscape across Scotland. Our role is to help everyone understand, value and enjoy Scotland's nature now and in the future. For more information, visit our website at www.nature.scot. SNH media is also on Twitter at http://twitter.com/nature_scot 

Scottish Natural Heritage is the government's adviser on all aspects of nature and landscape across Scotland. Our role is to help people understand, value and enjoy Scotland's nature now and in the future. For more information, visit our website at www.nature.scot or follow us on Twitter at https://twitter.com/nature_scot

Tha Dualchas Nàdair na h-Alba na buidheann comhairleachaidh dhan riaghaltas a thaobh nàdair agus seallaidhean-tìre air feadh Alba. 'S e an dleastanas a th' againn cuideachadh a thoirt do dhaoine gus tuigse, luach agus tlachd fhaighinn bho nàdar na h-Alba, an-dràsta agus san àm ri teachd. Airson tuilleadh fiosrachaidh, tadhail air www.nature.scot/gaelic  no lean sinn air Twitter aig https://twitter.com/nature_scot

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