Nature at its Finest
5:30am on a Sunday morning is not usually a time of day I see often, unless I’m headed to an airport. But, between the end of October and the end of December every year on the Lincolnshire coast, something quite special happens which makes the 5:30am alarm easier to deal with.
Every year the Grey Seals grace Donna Nook’s beaches with their presence for two months to have their babies. It is such an amazing experience to see wild seals nursing their pups right in front of your eyes. This year, so far, there are 2,010 seals in total on the shores of Lincolnshire, including Male and Female adults and what a sight it is to see. Of course, you don’t have to be there at the crack of dawn like we were, but at this time in the morning the seals are very awake and really lively.
We saw new pups, you know, the white fluffy ones that look like you could just pick them up and give them a squeeze (not advisable FYI), older pups who were shedding the last of their baby fluff, mummy seals nursing their babies and Male seals trying their luck at finding their next mate. It’s surprisingly peaceful and quiet there at this time in the morning as not many other tourists have gotten their weary heads out of bed yet!
A baby seal nursing on it’s Mother. December 2018
I’d say the walking trail - which is all fenced off for safety of the seals and the humans - is around a mile walk to the end and back. A lot of the pups come right up to the fence and some will let you take their photo without barking or hissing at you!
You can see for miles across the flat Lincolnshire coastline here, but just a little warning for those of you who may visit with children (but even for yourself) there may be a few pups laid on the beach who have sadly passed away. We saw three today.
Unfortunately the statistics are against the pups and only 10% are likely to survive and make it back to sea. It’s facts like this about nature that really ground you whilst taking your photos and videos etc and make you think. Of the 2,010 seals on Donna Nook beach, only 201 will make it back to the waters.
The Lincolnshire Wildlife trust work really hard here for the two months that the seals are on land. They are mostly volunteers and are at Donna Nook from 6am in the morning. The wardens we spoke to are very knowledgeable and try to keep tabs on the seals even though there are so many!
Another special mention has to be to the local seal sanctuary’s in the area. Any seals that are injured or deemed as unhealthy will be rescued by the sanctuary’s and given medical attention until they are seen to be fit enough to go back to the wild. We visited the Mablethorpe Wildlife Sanctuary where they have kept 8 seals (I think) who were all rescued from Donna Nook beach. You can visit them all year round as they do not close in the winter time.
Have you experienced any wildlife in the UK? If so I would love to hear your experiences, leave me a comment below.
- Lea Bella x