Stranded Seals Cause Havoc in Newfoundland Town

14 January, 2019, 15:41 | Author: Sheila Harris
  • Seals have been turning up on the roads and other places they don't belong in Roddickton

Two have been accidentally struck by cars at night, and several townsfolk have expressed concerns to local media that the chubby, big-eyed beasts may soon starve without access to food.

It is against Canadian law to interfere with marine mammals such as seals.

Jolene Garland said police believe it was the same seal because of similarities in photos taken on both days it was reported. With limited sea ice to rest on, the seals may be hauling out closer to the coast, which makes them more vulnerable to following streams inland and getting stuck when streams and bays ice over.

Fishery Officers have relocated four of those seals from Roddickton-Bide Arm as the town continues to deal with an influx of the animals. Most of the sightings appear to have been around bodies of water, but police could become engaged if they receive a report of the seals causing legitimate danger.

Roddickton-Bide Arm Mayor Sheila Fitzgerald said the lost animals have been blocking roads and driveways.

Fitzgerald says a few seals are usually spotted near town every year, but she's never seen such a large group and the animals' condition is disturbing for residents.

The city authorities asked for help from the Canadian Government, so the Department of Fisheries and Oceans should step in and help save the seals.

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"Any seals seen in town - in the backyards, on the road, by businesses' entrance - will get captured and brought to the edge of ice, which is 10km (about 6 miles) from here".

"They're pitiful to look at".

Now that the seals are there, the town and the DFO have to decide what to do about them, and whether or not they should be - or can be - moved.

Seals on the town's roads are a particular concern, she said, after two were found dead yesterday.

He was also concerned that people might unwittingly get too close to the animals which he anxious might make the seals turn aggressive.

"[They] may appear to be friendly in nature, [but] it is very risky to approach or attempt to capture animals without proper equipment", a Facebook post read.



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