Seals being cared for at the RSPCA East Winch Wildlife Centre

A common seal pup cared for at the RSPCA East Winch Wildlife Centre during the pandemic has been spotted happy and healthy in France.

Has Been, as he was named, was spotted in Dunkirk earlier this month.

The youngster was taken into RSPCA care as an orphan from Shoeburyness in Essex in June, weighing just 10kg.

He was at East Winch for several months to ensure he was strong enough to return to the wild and was tagged and released into The Wash in November weighing a healthy 38.5kg.

Centre manager Alison Charles, said: “We were so delighted to hear that Has Been had been spotted alive and well. “He was such a tiny little fella when he came into our care, we had to work hard to get his weight back up and, as with all our orphan seals, it is a long road to recovery.

“2020 was such an emotionally tough year for everyone and one we will never forget. However, the RSPCA still continued to rescue and rehabilitate animals during these difficult times.” 

In the past 12 months, East Winch  staff have released 75 seals (43 commons and 32 greys) and are currently caring for 29.

They have all come in for a range of reasons including injuries from dogs and other seals, being disturbed by humans, orphaned, or were found emaciated, dehydrated and sick. 

“At the moment we are still caring for 29  pups at our hospital, many of which are getting through three hourly feeds – so as you can imagine we do need a lot of fish for all our patients.”