Nowhere else do seals give birth to their young in such an accessible place and in such large numbers. The first pups are born in early November and the last in mid - late December, mostly along the edge of the dunes The cows keep close to their pups at first & do not get to feed until they go back to sea after mating, leaving the pup to fend for itself at about 18 days old. The pups stay for another week or so living off its reserves while it moults into its adult coat, then it too heads off to sea.
The bulls mostly laze around all day, huffing and groaning and arguing with the other bulls... ( hmm, sounds familiar) Although of breeding age at about 6 years old, they do not usually get their own harem until they are at least 10 when they are fully grown weighing as much as 250 kg, and able to defend their position on the beach.
On the whole the seals are as unperturbed by the RAF planes as they are by the visitors. They are curious and gregarious and surprisingly noisy, the pups really do call mama and the cows grunt and wail a lot.
You are so close to the seals it is easy to forget that they are wild animals. Do not cause stress to the mothers by getting too close and do not forget they bite.
The adults can be identified by a photo of their markings in a three inch area around the ear. This is how it is known the same seals come back to the same place at the same time each year. Sadly, about 10% of the pups at Donna Nook NNR do not make it back as they get caught in fishing nets or other mishaps, but compared to losses of up to 50% in other colonies or Rookeries they are doing well. In 2006 we had a record 1070 new pups!
Donna Nook is a National Nature Reserve because of its importance for wildlife including birds, rare orchids, and much more. It is just three miles from our B&B and sign posted from the B1031 in nearby North Somercotes village. We have had the best of times walking along the beach. I hope you enjoy the pictures from Jenny Hibbert
Thank you so much for this wonderful experience. We need to come back for some more of this."
Kiitos Family, Jankari, Finland
Grey Seals at Donna Nook
see the Seals
at Donna Nook
a visit to the wild seal colony is one
of the wildlife experiences in Britain
Cloddygate Farm Organic Bed & Breakfast Accommodation, Owes Lane, Skidbrooke, Louth, Lincs. LN11 7DE