It’s almost time to welcome the Atlantic Grey Seals and their pups back to Norfolk

 seal pups at Horsey Gap in Norfolk

seal pups at Horsey Gap in Norfolk - Credit: citizenside.com

Pupping season is fast approaching the east coast, with the first baby seals of the season potentially arriving come the end of next month.

 seal pups at Horsey Gap in Norfolk

seal pups at Horsey Gap in Norfolk - Credit: citizenside.com

The Atlantic Grey Seals come to give birth to their pups in Norfolk every autumn, and stay on the sandy beaches for around three months.

Each season sees an increase in population over the last, with the larger colony at Horsey now spilling towards Wacham and Winterton.

It is hoped that this year, conservationists will see more than 2,000 seals on the beaches.

And with an increased amount of seals comes an increased amount of work.

 seal pups at Horsey Gap in Norfolk

seal pups at Horsey Gap in Norfolk - Credit: citizenside.com

So the Friends of Horsey Seals are appealing for new people to join the existing ranks of wardens to keep an eye on Norfolk’s special visitors.

The only requirements needed are that volunteers are interested in protecting wildlife, are over the age of 16, and can donate their time to Horsey or Winterton, or both.

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To apply, contact recruitment@friendsofhorseyseals.co.uk.

Full training is given to volunteers before the season begins.

Horsey Seals

Horsey Seals - Credit: Jo Clarke

What should you do when visiting the seals at Horsey?

Paul Ansell is one of the volunteers with the charity at Horsey.

Mr Ansell had some advice for visitors to the Horsey and Winterton beaches.

 Located an injured seal on Waxham beach and using a 600mm lens from a respectable distance photogr

Located an injured seal on Waxham beach and using a 600mm lens from a respectable distance photographed its injuries. I then used the internet to send the photos to Seal and Shore Watch who were able to get volunteers from Horsey on site within 2 hours to collect the seal which is now at East Winch RSPCA site undergoing treatment. Hopefully it will be survive and be released when it is healed and strong enough. - Credit: citizenside.com

He advised people to:

• Stay at least 10 metres from the seals.

• Likewise, keep an eye out for seals on the dunes and give them a wide berth.

• The easiest way to make sure you are not disturbing the animals is to keep to the designated viewing areas and stay within the fencing.

• Observe the voluntary beach closure during pupping time.

• Report any sick or injured animals to the RSPCA 0300 1234 999 or FoHS 01493 748516.

• Keep dogs on a lead - seals have a nasty bite.

• Remember grey seals are wild animals and should not be approached.

• Respect other visitors.