Gulf Islands National Park Reserve

Seals and seal pups: please keep your distance

Issued: July 22, 2016

Issued 2016-07-22 (YYYY-MM-DD)

Time 9:23:35

Seals spend about a third of their time on land to rest, socialize, give birth, bask in the sun, etc. If you come across a live seal, please keep your distance as seals are easily disturbed.

Seal pup season occurs during spring and summer. Each year people find baby seals (seal pups) on shore and pick them up thinking they have been abandoned. The mothers may simply be out foraging or frightened away by human presence and will return shortly to reclaim and tend to their pup. If you come across a seal pup on land, please keep your distance and do not attempt to remove the seal as it may not need rescuing and your actions can endanger its life.

How can you help?

• DO NOT touch, move, disturb or harass the seal
• DO NOT try to feed the seal
• DO NOT pour water on the seal as they are often on shore to dry off
• DO NOT force the seal into the water

• DO stay a safe distance away from the seal (100 m)
• DO keep pets and children away to avoid harmful interaction
• DO observe the size, condition, location of the seal
• DO call if you see a seal that you believe is sick, injured, being harmed or harassed.

It is illegal for unauthorized people to possess, touch, harass, or remove wildlife in Gulf Islands National Park Reserve. Failure to comply may result in fines or charges being laid.

If you observe any wounds or believe the seal to be injured, please call Parks Canada at 1-877-852-3100 or the Vancouver Aquarium’s Marine Mammal Rescue Team at (604) 258-SEAL (7325). Park Reserve staff will assess the situation and respond if necessary.

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