Seal pups released back into Manx waters

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Two seal pups rescued by the ManxSPCA during the winter storms have been released back into the wild.

Leprechaun and Thunderball were found washed up at Fleshwick and Port Jack.

Leprechaun makes his way to the sea at Fleshwick

Leprechaun makes his way to the sea at Fleshwick

The pups were nursed back to health and on Friday were transported from Ard Jerkyll to Fleshwick to be released back into the water.

Jenny Corran, head of the seal unit, said that while Leprechaun wasn’t keen on returning to the sea, Thunderball went straight out.

Margaret Mansfield said: ‘It’s wonderful when we bring them in and they’re ill and wouldn’t be able to survive, and we can nurse them back to health and release them.

‘Hopefully they will now go on to have long and happy lives in their natural environment.’

Leprechaun was taken in by the ManxSPCA in October, and when found was too young to be able to look after itself.

The seal pup was due to be released in late December but the release had to be postponed due to the bad weather conditions.

Meanwhile Thunderball was found at Port Jack about five weeks ago.

The seal pup was quite underweight, very thin and lethargic.

December’s stormy weather led to a surge in the number of seal pup rescues carried out by the charity.

In each case, it was alerted of a stranded pup by a member of the public, and Jenny has thanked residents for their support.

Rescues have also taken place at Peel’s Fenella beach, Langness and even Douglas beach.

The charity aims to get the pups’ bodyweight to 30kg before they’re released. On arrival, they have been weighing as little as 10kg.

Many of the seal pups have all been named after good luck charms. Others include Fortune, Clover and Shamrock.

There are currently three seal pups in the ManxSPCA’s care. It is hoped that they will be ready to be released in February.

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