Friday, July 24, 2009

Seal Pup Sitting

Things have been pretty quiet on the seal pup stranding front this summer with only a few calls to the Whatcom Marine Mammal Stranding Network (WMMSN) so far but seal pup season is not over by any stretch and we've been called out again. This time it's a harbor seal, just a pup, stranded on a beach at Birch Bay. Think of me as that afternoon temperature soars to a predicted season high - as a stranding response team member authorized by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administraton (NOAA), I'll be sitting on the beach at Birch Bay, protecting that stranded pup and helping to educate the public about the importance of sharing the shore with marine mammals.Under the Marine Mammal Protection Act, harbor seal populations have recovered to healthy numbers. Federal marine mammal regulations prohibit harassing seals on shore to reduce the human disturbance of their important life process. If you find a stranded seal pup on the beach, give the animal space - stay back 100 yards if possible. Respect the role of nature by not touching, handling or feeding any seals found on the shore.

If the animal appears injured or stranded, or to report incidents of harassment, please contact the NOAA hotline through the Northwest Marine Mammal Stranding Network at 800-853-1964, or in Whatcom County, call WMMSN directly at 360-966-8845. The Whatcom Marine Mammal Stranding Network is an organization of volunteers that are dedicated to the care of distressed or deceased marine mammals. Under an authority granted by NOAA, the WMMSN does the following:

  • Responds to reports of stranded, distressed or deceased marine mammals.
  • Assesses the condition of stranded marine mammals and determine how best to help them.
  • Prevents human contact and interference with stranded marine mammals.
  • In some cases, careful and safe removal of deceased marine mammals.
  • Determines why marine mammals died, performing necropsies when necessary.
  • Determines if stranded or deceased marine mammals pose a biological threat to humans or other marine life.
  • Educates the public about local marine mammals and how best to cohabitate with them.
Visit the WMMSN website at - - to learn more about what we do and find out how you can help.

1 comment:

  1. Nice job.
    Good job.
    I'm glad you're keeping busy.
    Fred the meat eater


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