It’s siesta time for the Common Seals at Broughton on Westray.
It’s a time to let their food go down, let their skin dry out and have a bit of social contact:
Common Seals are protected by law in Britain under the Conservation of Seals Act 1970 and in Northern Ireland by the Wildlife (Northern Ireland) Order 1985. They are a priority species under the UK’s Biodiversity Framework. You would think that would make them safe.
They are not. Since 2011, over 800 seals have been killed by being shot (link to BBC News) by fish farmers in Scotland. Why? Because shooting them is cheaper than double-netting Salmon farms. If you buy farmed Salmon you’re paying producers to kill both Common and Grey Seals.
This couple are having a scratching fight. It’s all handbags.
Soon the tide will call them and wild fish await their whiskers.