Seal pups on Blakeney Point
Blakeney Point is a perfect breeding site for grey seals and pup survival rates are high with just a 5% mortality. Grey seal pups are born on Blakeney Point during November, December and early January. In 2001 just 25 pups were born but we have seen numbers increase year on year and Blakeney Point has become the largest seal colony in England with over 2,700 seal pups born in 2017.
Blakeney National Nature Reserve
Blakeney Point is part of Blakeney National Nature Reserve and has been under the care of the National Trust since it was gifted in 1912. The iconic Lifeboat House was bought in 1922 and is now a visitor centre and accommodation for the rangers living on Blakeney Point (during the summer period only). A four-mile long shingle spit, Blakeney Point is recognised as internationally important for its breeding birds, and its seal colony.
The Ranger team protect and monitor the seal colony. For the safety of seals and visitors, the western-most mile of beach and dunes on the Point are fenced off during the breeding season, which runs from late October until late January. Pups are regularly counted and any found to be seriously ill or injured are taken to the RSPCA animal hospital.
Grey Seals on Blakeney Point
Grey seal pups are born on land with white coats. They are fed on their mother’s rich milk for up to three weeks. In this time, they triple in size and shed their white fur. The mother then leaves the pup to fend for itself. Mating takes place soon after pupping. Male seals, bulls, fight for territories and the dominant ones will mate with several females. This makes the colony a dramatic, but dangerous place.