Seal Season

Most of the Grey Seals have left Blakeney Point now and Dina-Hanne did the last turn as an assistant ranger at the Point yesterday. There are still many Grey Seals left, but the seal pupping season is over and what a season it was!

Die meisten Kegelrobben, in Deutschland das größte freilebende Raubtier, haben gerade den Blakeney Point verlassen. So war es gestern Dina-Hannes letzter Einsatz als Hilfsranger dort. Es gibt hier noch einige Kegelrobben, aber die Zeit der Geburten und des Säugens der Jungen ist vorbei. Es war eine außerordentliche erfolgreiche Saison. In Deutschland findet man Kolonien der Kegelrobben, die vom Laien oft mit Seehunden verwechselt werden, hauptsächlich auf Sylt, Amrum und Helgoland.

On December 21st 2018, pups born in one season on Blakeney Point surpassed 3,000 for the first time. The latest count yesterday was 3,010 Grey Seal pups born so far this winter. Every third day the Rangers are out to count them and provide help for seals which are entangled in plastic or injured.

Am 21. Dez. 2018 überschritten die Geburten am Blakeney Point zum ersten Mal 3000. Die letzte Zählung gestern ergab, dass 3010 Junge in dieser Saison geboren wurden. Jeden dritten Tag werden sie von den Rangern gezählt und dabei auch Tieren geholfen, die sich in Plastik verhedderten oder verletzt sind.


Dina-Hanne, with help from the pups, is watching that nobody will disturb them as the Grey Seals are quite a tourist attraction. The mothers escape into the sea if people or dogs are getting too near. They leave their pups what can cause their death.
The pups have to shed their lanugo called white fur to grow a waterproof adult fur before they can hunt in the sea. With their new fur, they can swim up to 1000 miles to find feeding grounds. Until they haven’t grown their adult fur they stay on land as they are able to regulate their body temperature there. The pups suckle the fat milk (up to 60% fat) of their mothers for 2 to 3 weeks and growing thrice times bigger during this time. The mothers are usually giving birth to one pup after being pregnant for 11.5 months. Males don’t provide parental care.  

This is what it looks like when a pup is moulting. It’s perfectly normal, but many upset visitors call the NT when they see it, thinking the pup needs help.

Da Kegelrobben den heutigen Touristen betören, passt Dina-Hanne am Blakeney Point auf, dass keiner ihnen zu nahe kommt. Wenn sie durch Menschen und speziell Hunde gestört werden, fliehen die Mütter ins Meer und verlassen ihre Säuglinge, was deren Tod bedeuten kann.
Die Kegelrobben-Babys müssen erst ihr weißes weiches Fell, das Lanugo (lat. für Wolle) genannt wird, abwerfen, bevor sie mit ihrem neuen wasserdichten Fell im Meer jagen können, wo sie als ausgewachsene Tiere nach wenigen Wochen zwischen mehreren hundert bis zu über 1000 Kilometern zu ihren Fressgründen schwimmen. Solange sie sich nicht gemausert haben, müssen sie an Land bleiben, da sie dort ihre Körpertemperatur besser regulieren können. Die Jungen werden mit der fetten Milch der Mütter (bis zu 60% Fett) 2 bis 3 Wochen lang gesäugt, in denen sie dreimal größer als bei ihrer Geburt werden. Die Mütter gebären nach 11,5 Monaten Schwangerschaft fast immer nur ein Junges. Männliche Tiere kümmern sich nicht um die Aufzucht.

Grey Seals are born at the Blakeney Point between November and the beginning of January. It’s a huge success of the NT that so many Grey Seals are born here. We had only 25 pups in 2001 and since then the number is growing asymptotically, and the death rate is very low with 3%. Our colony is the biggest in England.
Male Grey Seals live on average for 25 years, females for 35 years. The much bigger and darker males can grow up to 2.5 meters and 250 kg.
The enemy of the pups are the greater black-backed gulls (the biggest gull in the world). But their attack is risky as they get often bitten. That not only breaks their wings but they get a deadly infection too. For humans, a seal bite is also quite dangerous.   

Kegelrobben werden am Blakeney Point zwischen November und Anfang Januar geboren. Dass so viele Robben hier geboren werden, ist eine Erfolgsgeschichte des National Trust. 2001 gab es nur 25 Geburten hier und seitdem hat es eine enorme Zunahme der Geburten gegeben bei einer geringen Sterberate von 3%, so dass unsere Kolonie zur größten Englands und elft größten weltweit wurde.
Männliche Kegelrobben werden im Schnitt 25, Weibchen 35 Jahre alt. Die viel größeren und dunkleren männlichen Tiere können bis 2,5 m lang und 250 kg schwer werden.
Feind der Jungen ist die Mantelmöwe, die weltgrößte Möwe. Allerdings kommen einige Mantelmöwen beim Angriff auf Jungen um, da sie gebissen werden und dabei nicht nur oft ihr Flügel bricht, sondern auch die massenhaften Keime durch den Biss Entzündungen hervorrufen, die die Möwe sterben lassen. Für Menschen ist ein Seehundbiss ebenfalls äußerst gefährlich.

Do you agree that the big eyes of the Grey Seals seem to be quite human?
Like all life, men’s origin is the sea. But Grey Seals reversed evolution. They went from land back to the sea about 15 to 20 Mio. years ago.   

Findet Ihr nicht auch, die relativ großen Augen der Kegelrobben haben etwas Menschliches?
Wie alles Leben stammen wir Menschen aus dem Meer, aber die Kegelrobben kehrten diesen evolutionären Trend um. Vor etwa 20 – 15 Mio. Jahren kehrten sie vom Land, wo sie otterähnliche Tiere waren, ins Meer zurück.

Why are we that fascinated by the seals that we travel far to see them? Is there a magical connection between men and seals?
Seals are animals of the soul. Seel was their old Norse name and the origin of the English word seal as well as soul and selkie.  The psychoanalyst Clarissa Pinkola Estes describes in “Women Who Run With Wolves” how men utterly and thoroughly fell in love with selkies. They hide their fur that they can’t escape but the clever selkies find it and escape as seals into the sea to infatuate men as beautiful mermaids. But, of course, there exist male selkies as well. Following the Edda texts of Snorri Sturluson, they go back to Loki, the Trickster of Norse mythology, who transformed himself into a seal.
Mythology and fairy tales show clearly that people long before the invention of nature-tourism felt drawn to the seals.  

Warum sprechen uns Menschen die Kegelrobben so an, dass wir die Beschwernis langer Reisen auf uns nehmen, um sie zu erleben? Was hat es mit dieser geradezu magischen Verbindung zwischen Kegelrobbe und Mensch auf sich?
Kegelrobben, die fälschlicher Weise oft Seehunde genannt werden, sind Seelentiere. Seel war ihr nordischer Name, wovon das englische Wort seal abstammt. Sie wurden als Seel(en)hunde um 1400 von hanseatischen Kaufleuten nach Deutschland gebracht. Aus Seelhund wurde dann Seehund oder Selkie. Die Analytikerin Clarissa Pinkola Estes beschreibt in “Die Wolfsfrau”, wie Männer sich unsterblich in Selkies verlieben und in ihrem Liebeswahn deren Fellkleid verstecken. Die schlauen Selkies erobern jedoch ihr Fell zurück und entkommen als Seehunde ins Meer, wo sie als Seejungfrauen die Menschen betören. Es gibt natürlich auch männliche Seehunde, die nach den eddischen Texten Snorri Sturlusons auf den Trickster Loki zurückgehen, der sich u.a. in einen Seehund verwandelt.
Diese mythologischen Beispiele zeigen, dass Menschen bereits lange vor Erfindung des Naturtourismus sich den Seals verbunden fühlten.

Grey Seals were hunted for their fur much less than other seals. But fishermen hunted them as they eat 5 kg and more fish per animal per day. In the UK they were first mammals being protected with Grey Seals Protection Act of 1914. Today they are protected under Conservation Seals Act since 1970, but from Sept. 1st to Dec. 31st only.
No more seals are killed by men at the Blakeney Point as we are a marine conservation zone (The Wash & North Norfolk Coast Special Area of Conservation – European Marine Site) and especially as the former fishermen make more money with seal trips for tourists than with fishing. 

Kegelrobben wurden seltener als Seehunde wegen ihres Fells aber aus Konkurrenzgründen von Fischern gejagt, da sie pro Tier etwa 5 kg Fisch tgl. fressen. In Großbritannien waren die Kegelrobben die ersten Säugetiere, die im Grey Seals Protection Act von 1914 geschützt wurde. Heute sind sie durch den Conservation Seals Act von 1970 (vom 1. September bis 31. Dezember) geschützt.
Am Blakeney Point werden keine Seals mehr durch Menschen getötet, da wir ein Meeresschutzgebiet sind und vor allem, weil die ehemaligen Fischer mit ihren Ausflügen für Touristen zu den Seehundbänken einen größeren Gewinn machen als mit dem Fischfang.

And tell me, grey seal, how does it feel
To be so wise
To see through eyes
That only see what’s real?

Elton John “Grey Seal“, lyrics by Bernie Taupin 

Dina-Hanne is very sad as her time as seal-warden is finished. Now she is looking forward to the summer when she will guard the breeding places of all the terns at the Blakeney Point. 

Dina-Hanne ist ganz traurig, dass ihre Zeit als Aufpasserin im Robben-Kindergarten abgelaufen ist, aber im Sommer wird sie hier die Brutplätze der verschiedenen Seeschwalben bewachen.

We wish you all a happy and healthy 2019
The Fab Four of Cley
💃🚶‍♂️👭

 

.

© Text and illustrations, Hanne Siebers and Klausbernd Vollmar, Cley next the Sea, 2019

P.S.

Not only Annalena (Buchdame) has asked how it is possible to keep track of the pups and count them. Ranger Leighton Newman, from National Trust Blakeney Nature Reserve, explains it to us:

“The count began on October 25, when the very first seal pup was spotted. Numbers being born were slow to start this year and for the first month it looked like we wouldn’t reach last year’s total, but suddenly more and more pups were being born, with 150 born a day at the colony’s peak some five weeks ago.” The rangers carry out regular counts of the seal pups and given the numbers involved, it’s not an easy task. One of the team walks a set route, counting the pups as they go. For the first three weeks a weekly count is done of all pups, then as the pups are weaned the method changes to count the pups that are less than three days old, which are easily distinguished by the yellow colour of their coat and the umbilical coil, every three days.The seals are spread out over a large area of the reserve, which continues to expand as the colony gets bigger, so it can take around five hours to complete each count.

Ranger Leighton Newman

228 thoughts

  1. MAGNIFICENT photos, as always — but what a wonderful narrative too. I had no idea seals had such an important place in mythology, for instance! I learn so much from your posts; thank you for so generously sharing your experiences here.

    Liked by 5 people

    • Dear Heide,
      thank you very much for liking our post 🙂 🙂
      You find more about the seals in mythology and literature in our post “A Must See in Norfolk”. In Scandinavian fairy tales, you find the seals as well.
      All the best
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 4 people

  2. Happy New Year, dear Klaus! I wish you more seals in 2019! They are wonderful creatures. And…byt the way, about the linke between mythology and our life: that is a big question where the real myth begins. Maybe Selkie do exist…I believe that they must exist, as humans are unable to invent things they have no idea about. Send your Selkies my best Christmas wishes!
    Hurray!
    Maria

    Liked by 5 people

    • Dear Kethu,
      all the best for 2019 to you as well 🙂 🙂
      Well, we agree that Selkies may exist. Siri 🙂 and 🙂 Selma are sure that they exist. When our beloved Bookfayries on the beach they told us that they always have a little chat with them. Maybe one has to be a fairy to meet the Selkies – but we are all a bit fairylike, aren’t we?
      We’ll send the Selkies your Christmas wishes. Don’t you live in Scotland? Some of our Selkies are on their way to you.
      Thank you very much for your comment
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

    • Oh, gosh, dear Klaus! No, I live in Moscow Russia and sometimes in Italy,,,but I have begun to learn Scottish Gaelic! So, I guess I will hear them in my dreams! Thank you so much! 🙂 🙂 🙂 Bliandha Mhath U’r!

      Liked by 4 people

    • Dear Kethu,
      in folklore, the dream of a seal is seen as an expression of longing for a child. Well … I couldn’t find anything about how a dream of a Selkie is seen. I would see it as a longing for freedom.
      Klausbernd
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 3 people

    • Hmmm…that’s the point, my dear friend. I guess we should comprehend it as Pluto in astrology, that is a total tranformation. In fact, a child might be regarded allegorically as a fruit of some sort of action. So the dream of a seal should be something like that. Besides, a Selkie keeps the connection between the real world & the world of spirits, perhaps her dream is longing for it never be over.
      Maria,
      🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

    • Dear Kethu,
      oh dear, I hope that’s your first name.
      That you compare the Selkies with Pluto is perfect. They are both like Hermes (Ἑρμῆς or Mercurius) the messenger of the gods in Greek mythology or let’s say the messenger of the otherworld.
      Wishing you a great week
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks, dear Klaus. My first name is Maria. Kethu is a bloggy name…In fact any creative person should have one. By the by, have you watched the Irish animation “The Song of the Sea” by Tome Moore? I do recommend you. It tells Selkie’s story in such a wonderful way! Have a nice Selkie week! Best wishes,
      Maria 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 3 people

    • Dear Maria,
      yes, we watched “Song of the Sea” and like it VERY much 🙂 🙂 Siri 🙂 and 🙂 Selma watched it again and again.
      Greetings from our Norfolk Selkies.
      All the best
      The Fab Four of Cley

      Liked by 3 people

    • Liebe Ursel,
      habe herzlichen Dank, dass dir unsere Blogpost gefällt.
      Auch dir und Herbert wünschen wir ein rundum tolles 2019. Habt’s schön!
      Mit lieben Grüßen vom Meer nach Frankfurt
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 2 people

    • A Happy New Year o you as well!
      Hanne-Dina collected some of the extreme soft furs they shed during mounting. Siri 🙂 and 🙂 Selma want to make bookmarks from this lanugo. But we agree with you they look a bit strange during their time of mounting.
      Thanks for commenting
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

    • Dear Rob,
      puppy seals have a kind baby appearance (“Baby Schema” it’s called in the psychology of perception).
      In one of our next blog posts, we will write about the cruelty of nature. An interesting topic. Actually, we wanted to mention it in this post as well but that would have made it too long and complex for one blog post.
      Greetings from the sea and thanks for commenting regularly 🙂 🙂
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 2 people

  3. My dear friends, the images are breathtakingly beautiful and such an interesting narrative!! I love the seal pups, but I must admit, I absolutely adore the last image. This is one to put in a frame, Dina. Looks like I’m too late for this season, but next December I’ll pay North Norfolk a visit again. Can’t wait to get away from London …
    Happy New Year and all the best to the Fab Four!
    Sarah Xx

    Liked by 4 people

    • Dear Sarah,
      thank you very much 🙂 🙂
      Siri 🙂 and 🙂 Selma love that last picture as well. Indeed, they printed it out and have it hanging over their little Bookfayrie beds.
      Happy New Year to you as well.
      With lots of love
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭
      December is the ideal time for having a look at the seal pups. Come around for a tea then!

      Liked by 2 people

    • Dear Peter,
      wishing you a happy and healthy New Year as well.
      Thank you very much for liking our blog posts 🙂 🙂 that is very much appreciated and thanks for commenting regularly 🙂 🙂
      Warm greetings from the cold sea
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

  4. This is what it looks like when a pup is moulting. It’s perfectly normal, but many upset visitors call the NT when they see it, thinking the pup needs help.

    The ignorance of some humans when it comes to wildlife can be dangerous the animals.

    Liked by 4 people

  5. Beautiful photos, Dina. You’ve shown a lot of their personalities in the photos. Here on the west coast of Canada it’s hard to look kindly on a seal because they take such a lot of our commercial salmon catch for food, but we all have to eat, and they are beautiful animals.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Dear Anneli
      well, nature is eating and being eaten. We will write in one of our next blogs about “cruelty” in the animal kingdom.
      Thanks a lot for your commentary.
      All the best
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

    • I have seen some awful things in nature, some for real and some on film, and it sure doesn’t reflect Walt Disney’s view that he presents for children, But I suppose what he does is foster empathy in children so they will grow up to love animals. That’s a good thing. But it sure is a shock when you see the real side of life.

      Liked by 3 people

    • I agree, dear Anneli.
      Well, Walt Disney’s presentation of nature has both sides producing love with animals and alienation from nature as well.
      Thanks for your comment
      Dear Laurie
      That’s the best attitude, isn’t it?
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

    • Good afternoon, dear Verne,
      thank you so much for liking Dina’s photography 🙂 🙂
      There are so many different kinds of seals. We didn’t know before we researched for this post.
      All the best
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

  6. I feel very happy to see that Hanne enjoyed her role as an assistant ranger. Amazing, how fast this seal colony is growing! I’d bet a penny the next season is going to be equally good or better. 🙂
    The pups looks so cute, with big inquisitive eyes, absolutely heartmelting . >3
    Aaaah, Clarissa Pinkola Estes – she is a big mentor for me and has been so for many years.
    Thank you for sharing this experience with us in wonderful images with fascinating information (cheers! Klausbernd! 🙂 )
    Looking forward to visiting you again this coming summer, FF! 🙂
    Klem,
    Hjerter ❤

    Liked by 4 people

    • Our dear friend Hjerter,
      thank you very much for your kind words. It’s very much appreciated that you like our post 🙂 🙂
      We’ll phone tonight.
      Love ❤ ❤
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 2 people

    • Unfortunately, that’s a reality. Therefore we do a beach clean several times per year. In comparison, the beaches around Blakeney Point are quite clean. But even so, wildlife is disturbed as well here.
      Thanks and cheers
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

  7. I learned something and I loved the photos! Wow, Dina, you got some wonderful images during your time as warden, and you did a great thing. The expression in the first photo is hilarious and sweet at the same time, and I love the second photo, too, with the sign. We have seals here too – I see them in the water once very few weeks or so. Their faces, the curiosity and the relaxed feeling – nothing like it. 🙂 I hope you have a fortunate New Year….the terns are next! I love them too! 🙂

    Liked by 4 people

    • Thank you so much for liking Dina’s photography 🙂 🙂
      Our grey seals are very curious as well. Swimming in the sea they follow you walking on the beach. In a boat, they come quite near too.
      Wishing you a happy and healthy New Year
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 2 people

  8. I’ve never thought much about seals, never having known much about them, but your narrative drew me into their lives and the problems they face growing up. Baby faces yes but beyond that, they look vulnerable and sad, their eyes entreating you for kindness. Thank you for the lessons your Post has brought.

    Liked by 5 people

    • Good afternoon, dear Mari,
      before Dina started as a seal warden we didn’t know much about seals and especially about grey seals neither.
      You are quite right for the first 3 weeks the pups are very vulnerable. They are fully dependant on their mother.
      With warm greetings from the cold sea
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 2 people

  9. Add another ‘Comment’ to this excellent slew of Comments? Well, yes, I must. This is a fine walk through of the natural history and current challenges to this captivating seal colony (?). I have never been so fortunate as to see such a fascinating ‘scape. In fact, I cannot remember a more instructive visit to a seal colony! Thanks.

    Liked by 5 people

    • Dear Jeff,
      wow! Thank you very much for your kind words we very much appreciate 🙂 🙂 Great that you commented!
      We became friends of the seals as you are a friend of the butterflies. At your beaches, you will find common or harbour seals which are smaller than our grey seals.
      With love from our little village next the big sea
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

    • Thank you very much for commenting 🙂 🙂
      Indeed, the difference is amazing so clumsy on the beach and very quick and dexterous in the water.
      All the best
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

  10. Fab Four of Cley,
    I can fully understand why Dina is sad when her time with the seals comes to a close. Their adorable faces seem to be posing for her camera and showing the world just how special they are. It gives me faith in the human race to know the pup count grows each year, especially with the recent news about Japan and their whaling.
    Always a pleasure to see another post from my favorite family.
    Happy New Year, my friends!!
    GP Cox

    Liked by 5 people

    • Dear GP Cox,
      we are here in the centre of UK’s ecological efforts. Many Rangers watch the seal rookeries and the bird colonies, we have a Wildlife Education Centre here in Cley and UK’s first Wildlife Trust was founded here. But that’s not normal for the rest of the UK. We will see what will happen when/if the UK is leaving the EU because EU funds are basic for preserving the nature here that well. On the hand, quite a lot of well-off people living here who are willing to donate quite some money for ecological efforts, sustainability and wildlife conservation.
      Thank you for your kind comment and for regularly commenting on our blog. We very much appreciate it 🙂 🙂 and always looking forward to reading your commentaries.
      Wishing our dear friend and your family a happy and healthy 2019.
      Love
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 4 people

    • Thank you, dear Sue, for liking our post and Dina’s effort in helping to watch this grey seal rookery.
      With lots of love from the sea(ls)
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

    • Thank you very much for liking our post. It was fun to research and then to write it and choose the pictures.
      Warm greetings from the cold sea
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 2 people

    • Dear Fraggle,
      a lot of our grey seals are moving up North after giving birth as well as the pups after they have grown their watertight adult fur. You might have seen some of the grey seals from our rookery. But there are other seals too, like common seals. Like their name, they are more common. You can find them everywhere on the UK’s coasts.
      Dina-Hanne got that near because she worked as a seal warden. Usually, you will not get that near to the grey seals with their pups. The rookery is a fenced off area where only the wardens are allowed in.
      Thanks and cheers
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

  11. Another fascinating post on the amazing life we are lucky to have in North Notfolk. Hanne-Dina, out of the thousands of photos you shot, your selection for this blog is awesome. Thank you again for sharing your wonderful adventures with us and the world. Love.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Good afternoon, dear Frederic,
      thank you very much for liking Dina’s pictures 🙂 🙂 and our post.
      Indeed, we are very happy to be able to live here at the North Norfolk coast.
      Love and warm greetings to you and Marie Noelle
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 2 people

    • Hi, dear Cindy,
      there are so many different seals! We don’t have Elephant Seals here. Here the biggest seals are these grey seals. When we where in Greenland we saw quite a lot walrusses. These are the biggest seals we have come across. It must be great be looked at from eyes big like saucers (such eyes play a role in the story of Ali Baba of “Arabian Nights”).
      Thanks and cheers
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 2 people

    • Dear Laurie,
      thank you so much for liking our post 🙂 🙂
      There is a lot of hope. But, as I wrote to GP Cox (above), we live here in a special area of conservation with the Wildlife Trust, the Nationa Trust, landscape, beach and sea protection area etc. It’s not everywhere like this in the UK.
      Lots of love from the sea(ls)
      Klausbernd and the rest of The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

    • Dear Cathy,
      first of all a happy and healthy New Year to you as well.
      Thank you for liking our post and for commenting here regularly which is very much appreciated.
      All the best
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

  12. You perfectly describe the dilemma one creates by expressing one’s love of our precious nature and thereby attracting extra attention to it. I believe NNR’s and the like allow that balance to be maintained with safety and care for wildlife, while helping to improve attitudes and awareness of man’s responsibilities in protecting the natural world. Your photos are beautiful.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Dear Simon,
      we suppose, only if people can experience “real” nature like on the Blakeney Point they will understand what ecology, sustainability and protecting wildlife is all about. We have a modern Wildlife Education Centre in Cley. There are courses and talks combined with the direct experience of wildlife which helps a lot to raise an ecological consciousness – and we hope that our blog does as well.
      Thanks for liking Dina’s photography
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

    • Dear Vicki,
      thank you very much, especially for liking Dina’s photography 🙂 🙂
      We have to say that the National Trust and Norfolk Wildlife Trust do a lot to preserve wildlife here.
      With love ❤
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

  13. I learned the story of the great Silkie of Sule Skerry from Joan Baez’s version of the song when I was in high school, in Iowa. I kept the album for years, and never could quite get the haunting ballad, or the myth, out of my mind. Eventually, I got to the ocean, and was able to see the seals of the American west coast, but these photos of Dina’s, soul-stirring and sweet, seem to show the seals of the song. I did smile at your note that “former fishermen make more money with seal trips for tourists than with fishing.” There are places where so-called ‘eco-tourism’ has devolved into scams, but it also can contribute to people’s understanding of nature, and help to protect sensitive areas. I’m glad Dina was able to do this, and I’m looking forward to the next posts.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Dear Linda
      thank you very much to mention this Joan Baez song we didn’t know. We will surely listen to it tonight, Siri 🙂 and 🙂 Selma are very much looking forward to hearing a song about a Selkie.
      Well, eco-tourism … It’s typical and exceptional as well (for the UK) that eco-tourism is quite educational orientated. So Dina was going with the tourists on the seal trips to explain. And then we have a very modern, best-equipped Wildlife Education Centre in Cley. The idea is (and we agree), only when people experience real nature they will understand ecology and hopefully change their behaviour. At some other places here, nothing is done to open nature for tourists. Those ones who take the effort to go there are ‘nature-compatible’.
      Thanks for commenting 🙂 🙂
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

  14. Wow, Dina, this is such a unique and beautiful post. Thank you for sharing more about the seals…. those photos are breathtaking. And, I love this:

    “And tell me, gray seal, how does it feel
    To be so wise
    To see through eyes
    That only see what’s real?”

    To me, that’s an apt description of the Soul.

    Sending you many blessings for your New Year. I acknowledge your caring for these beautiful animals. Thank you again.
    Debbie

    Liked by 4 people

    • Dear Debbie,
      thank you much for liking our post 🙂 🙂 and Dina’s voluntary work and photography.
      We send you our best wishes for the New Year. May it be a happy and healthy one.
      With love
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 2 people

  15. What gorgeous pictures of these animals. And what great background information–I did not know seals went BACK to the sea millions of years ago. I did know about the selfies though. I bet keeping the seals safe is a really satisfying job.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Hi,
      thank you VERY much for liking our post and commenting 🙂 🙂
      We better look at Selkies than taking selfies 😉
      Have an enjoyable weekend wishing you
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

    • Dear Nia,
      thanks for your kind words and for commenting regularly at ours 🙂 🙂 It’s very much appreciated!
      We are all very proud of Dina. She loved her job and it gave her the chance getting near to the grey seals without disturbing them and learn a lot from the head Rangers.
      A happy and wonderful New Year to you as well!
      Love ❤
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

    • Thank you very much for commenting and for liking Dina’s pictures of the grey seals 🙂 🙂
      A Happy and Healthy New Year to you as well
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

  16. I always knew that the job of seal warden would bring with it some wonderful photos, and the informative text to accompany them.
    Looks like I was right on both counts. 🙂 Great stuff indeed!
    Love from Beetley, Pete, and Ollie. X

    Liked by 5 people

    • Thank you very much, dear Pete 🙂 🙂
      and many thanks for commenting regularly here. It’s VERY much appreciated!
      Dina liked her job VERY much and now she is looking forward to the summer. She will work as a warden looking after the terns.
      With lots of love ❤ from the sea(ls)
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you very much, dear Pete 🙂 🙂 and many thanks for commenting here quite regularly! It’s VERY much appreciated.
      Dina is already looking forward to the summer to work as a tern warden. Siri 🙂 and 🙂 Selma are already sitting in our library finding all information about the different terns.
      With lots of love ❤ from the sea(ls)
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭
      Looking forward meeting you 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 3 people

  17. Happy New Year to you, the Fab Four. I have to say that Dina is being a little more than just fabulous with her work with the seals. (And the terns next). What a wonderful project to be involved with. It’s good to hear that Selma and Siri are in touch, sometimes, with the selkies. To properly care for a species we need to understand all aspects of their lives, including the mythical side.

    Liked by 5 people

    • Dear Gallivanta,
      happy New Year to you as well, may it become a healthy and wonderful year!
      Thanks a lot for commenting regularly at ours. That is very much appreciated 🙂 🙂
      You are absolutely right, to understand nature we have to look at it from many aspects. The net of these aspects is what nature is. This idea goes back to the first ecological philosopher Wilhelm von Humboldt. And we think that the mythological aspect is VERY important, it can teach us a lot. We call it an opener to deeper structures of nature.
      Wishing you an easy weekend
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

    • Guten Abend, liebe Ruth,
      auch dir und deiner Familie wünschen wir alles Gute. Habe ein tolles Neues Jahr.
      Vielen Dank fürs Kommentieren 🙂 🙂
      Die Kegelrobbenjungen sind wirklich soooo süß.
      Alles Liebe
      Kram
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 2 people

    • Hallo,
      es verschwinden nie alle Kegelrobben und im Mai und Sommer haben wir viele Seehunde am Blakeney Point, was zusammen mit der großen Seeschwalbenkolonie großartig ist. Die Seeschwalben – eine der wichtigsten Kolonien in Nord Europa – fliegen nämlich laut kreischend über den Rookeries (wie heißt das in Deutsch?) von mehreren hundert Seehunden. Leider ist der Bestand der Seeschwalben gefährdet.
      Habe Dank, dass dir unsere Post gut gefiel 🙂 🙂 und für deinen Kommentar.
      Wir wünschen dir ein entspanntes Wochenende
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

    • Ganz herzlichen Dank, liebe Pia!
      Nun wische dir die Augen und habe ein wunderschön entspanntes Wochenende.
      Mit ganz lieben ❤ Grüßen vom Meer und den Seals
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 2 people

    • Wir wünschen dir eine wundervolle Woche (huch, das ist ja ein klassischer Stabreim geworden 🙂 )
      Wir hatten am Samstag Big Bird Day. Da gingen wir in kleinen Gruppen durch die Gegend und notierten jeden Vogel, den wir sahen. Wir waren mit einer finnischen Birdwatcherin unterwegs, die bestens ihre Vögel kennt. Das war ein toller Tag, und wir lernten viel über die Federwesen der Lüfte.
      Liebe Grüße vom heute bedeckten Cley
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Very interesting and a real nature success story, which we need at present. There is a small colony of grey seals on the coast down here in south Devon. It is always special to see them when we are out walking. They also come in to the harbour at Brixham for discarded fish from the fishing boats.

    Liked by 5 people

    • Dear Philip,
      we agree we need success stories in the field of ecology and conservation. Here a lot is done in this respect partly with a lot of money from EU funds. If there will be a Brexit it will be much harder for conservation.
      We heard about this grey seal colony in Devon but have never been there.
      Thanks for commenting.
      Wishing you a great weekend
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 2 people

  19. I noticed that the first sentence is different in the two languages, with the German identifying these seals as wild predators, and the English omitting that. I also noticed that these seals are called Kegelrobben in German. Do you happen to know what feature the Kegel (cone) represents?

    It’s a shame that so many people ignore regulations and let their dogs run loose in parks and nature preserves.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Dear Steve,
      the grey seals are called ‘Kegelrobben’ in German because of the form of their teeth. Indeed, these grey seals are wild predators and therefore they were very much disliked by the fishermen. We suppose, there is a tendency to project a certain sweetness on nature and make it ‘human’. That is one of the symptoms of shifting more and more away from real nature. A lot of people know nature only through pictures and film.
      Why a lot of dog owners behave that stupidly in nature reserves maybe goes back to the psychology of dog owners or the reason why people need dogs. There is a wicked saying ‘underdogs need dogs’. But I am sure Dina will very much object because she is a dog lover.
      Happy weekend
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 2 people

    • Dear Michael,
      thank you very much for liking Dina’s photography 🙂 🙂 and for your comment.
      Imaging the sailors having not seen a woman for months and a seal appears it’s quite natural that they see a Selkie or a mermaid. In all the seafaring nations you find folklore and fairytales about such beings.
      Wishing you a happy weekend
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

  20. I’m very happy to read of this colony, watched over by rangers and wardens. The young seals are very appealing, and remind me very much of my old Labrador dog, who also loved the water. When I lived in Chile, I enjoyed seeing the seals, and Patagonian sea lions, – – the former would snooze side-by-side with the local dogs, who I think, sought them out on cold days, for their warmth.
    Thank you for the fascinating posts in 2018, and best wishes for the new year to all you writers, artists, and magical folk, RPT.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Dear Robert,
      thank you so much for your kind comment and for commenting regularly here. That is very much appreciated 🙂 🙂
      The grey seals are afraid of dogs and this especially when they have pups. Here seals and dogs don’t go together well. In Patagonia, I suppose, you have a different kind of seal.
      We wish you a wonderful New Year, stay healthy and happy!
      Have an easy weekend wishing you
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 2 people

    • Dear Susanne,
      there are quite some grey seal rookeries in England, some in Norfolk and in Devon and a small one in Cornwall and a bigger one up North. But ours is the biggest in England. There are maybe some bigger ones in Scotland. Dina-Hanne liked her work as a seal warden and protect them.
      Thank you very much for liking Dina’s photography 🙂 🙂
      All the best
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

    • Dear Sue,
      thank you so much for your comment and commenting regularly here. It’s VERY much appreciated 🙂 🙂
      The grey seals are a great success story. The National Trust, as well as the Norfolk Wildlife Trust, do a lot of conservation work here with the help of volunteers like Dina and funding by the EU. That might change after Brexit if there will be this disastrous Brexit.
      Wishing you a relaxing weekend
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

    • Dear Dawn,
      thanks a lot for commenting. As you help the little lizards Dina is helping the grey seals. It’s very awarding do conservation work, isn’t it?
      Wishing you a great weekend
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

    • Dear Tara,
      maybe all your seals were here 😉 Actually, the seals are not endangered. We are sure you will see seals soon again.
      Thanks for commenting and liking Dina’s photography.
      All the best
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 2 people

  21. The pups look so very vulnerable, don’t they? It must have been a privilege to be involved in helping to protect them. Thank you for sharing this with us, and a fulfilling and happy year to you all 🙂 🙂

    Liked by 4 people

    • Good evening, dear Jo,
      thank you very much for your good wishes. Have a wonderful new year as well. And many thanks for your comment and commenting regularly here. It’s very much appreciated 🙂 🙂
      The pups are quite vulnerable during their first 3 weeks. Protection is necessary, and Dina loved her job as a seal warden dearly.
      Wishing you an easy weekend
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

    • Dear Curt,
      well, understanding nature needs all aspects from biology to mythology. For us, the mythology leads you to a deeper understanding. You are absolutely right, it’s a dimension we don’t want to miss out as well as folklore and fairytales. There we find an often forgotten wisdom.
      Thank you very much for liking our post. We hope that it helps to raise the consciousness for nature and its conservation.
      Did you come across Alexander von Humboldt? He was the first scientist looking at nature as a living network and seeing our planet as a living being. In the US Muir quoted him a lot and Humboldt was his forerunner. We just read a very inspiring book by Andrea Wulf about Alexander von Humboldt (she writes in English). You would surely love it. It’s one of the best books about ecology we have ever read.
      Thank you and cheers and special thanks for commenting here regularly.
      Wishing you a happy weekend
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 2 people

    • Dear RH
      thanks a lot – ‘Erste Klasse!’ what praise, we feel honoured 🙂 🙂 And thank you for commenting regularly here.
      When you ever come to Blakeney Point again we would be happy if you would visit us.
      Wishing you a GREAT new year and a happy weekend
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

  22. A truly superb post, Fab Four, thank you. Great to see such a dramatic upswing in the grey seal population there at Blakeney Point, and wonderful that there is no hunting there as a marine protection zone. Isn’t it great that it’s more lucrative to give tourists a look at them, rather than hunting them? I have encountered that in other parts of the world with various creatures in the last few years too. Putting all environmental pluses aside, these photos and those cubs are absolutely adorable. Thanks so much–

    Liked by 4 people

    • Dear Jet,
      thank you for liking Dina’s photography 🙂 🙂 and your kind comment.
      We suppose, conservation only works when fishermen and hunters are included and find a new way getting an income. Conservation will never work if it doesn’t take people’s need into account.
      Wishing you a wonderful weekend
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

  23. Happy New Year to my friends in North Norfolk. It’s great to have an insight in the world of the Grey Seals on Blakeney Point. What a terrific piece of the coast to have in front of you! I always think of my visits to NN with very fond memories. Hanne has captured the various little characters in the different stages so well, this is stunning photography. The background information is a joy to read, some facts are familiar, most of what you write is new to me. The charismatic wild animals have a reputation of being playful and friendly – but recently I watched a film from the coast of UK where a Grey Seal attacked, killed and ate a harbour porpoise. This behaviour shows another side to their character. Adult Grey Seals have also been known to attack, kill and eat juvenile Grey Seals, so this type of activity isn’t totally surprising and is likely part of the natural cycle of life. Have you had any incidents on Blakeney Point where the pups have been attacked by the adults?
    Ha en god helg.
    KLEM til dere med de beste ønsker for det nye året,
    Per Magnus

    Liked by 5 people

    • Dear Per Magnus,
      a happy and healthy new year to our dear friend as well. Beste ønsker for det nye året!
      Nature is eating and being eaten, isn’t it? Some animals look so sweet like these seals and polar bears but they are hunters as well. We used to see this as cruel but that’s nature. A couple of days ago we decided to blog about the so-called cruelty one day.
      Why not visit us again? You are very welcome.
      Klem ❤
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  24. What a wonderful start to the New Year, Fab Four! This is surely going to be one of my favourite posts of yours. Superb pics and as always a high quality entertaining read. I have been to BP on several occasions and I must put it on my list again.
    – Anna

    Liked by 3 people

    • Hi, dear Anna,
      a visit to the Blakeney Point is always great. Walking to the Point from Cley is especially awarding. In the summertime, you can watch the terns fishing in the sea and there are always seals around.
      Thank you so much for your kind words 🙂 🙂
      Love
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  25. Sorry, I missed this one as I was away for the festive season. Per Magnus made me aware of your post when we talked earlier. I’m impressed and delighted to see how well Blakeney Nature Reserve is doing. You all did very well! Absolutely gorgeous photos and a delightful read. I’m curious to know how they count the seals, surely you can’t tell one from the other and they move about too so there’s has to be a system behind it?
    Kram, Annalena x

    Liked by 4 people

    • Hello Annalena,
      you are not the first one to ask this question. Ranger Leighton Newman explains it to us:

      Ranger Leighton Newman

      “The count began on October 25, when the very first seal pup was spotted. Numbers being born were slow to start this year and for the first month it looked like we wouldn’t reach last year’s total, but suddenly more and more pups were being born, with 150 born a day at the colony’s peak some five weeks ago.” The rangers carry out regular counts of the seal pups and given the numbers involved, it’s not an easy task. One of the team walks a set route, counting the pups as they go. For the first three weeks a weekly count is done of all pups, then as the pups are weaned the method changes to count the pups that are less than three days old, which are easily distinguished by the yellow colour of their coat and the umbilical coil, every three days.The seals are spread out over a large area of the reserve, which continues to expand as the colony gets bigger, so it can take around five hours to complete each count.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you very much – TACK – dear Annalena,
      indeed, the Blakeney Point Nature Reserve is doing VERY well. A lot of effort is put into it from the National Trust and all the volunteers like Dina. They do a great job.
      Dina answered already how the count is done. Our dear Master was wondering how it is done as well.
      KRAM xx ❤
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

    • Dear Dina,
      wow, what a great picture of the warden! A great portrait.
      Thanks for giving us the information on how the count is done. I was wondering as well.
      Love and kisses xxx
      Klausbernd 🚶‍♂️- sitting behind you answering the comments

      Liked by 2 people

    • Good afternoon, dear Brenda,
      we all love Dina’s photos as well. Many thanks for your comment and regularly commenting here. Great 🙂 🙂
      Dina loves being out there and looking after the pups and chicks. She is a friend of all animals.
      Have an easy weekend
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

  26. What great pictures of the beautiful seals and great information. It is so good to read that there are so may now – quite a task to count 3000. I am sure Dina loved that job, looking after them. They do have lovely eyes, but I feel they always look a bit sad. Sure they are happy to be protected from tourists and been looked after when they breed and are being born. Thanks for this post and a very happy new year to all four ! ♥

    Liked by 4 people

    • Dear Ute,
      a happy and healthy new year to you and your family as well.
      Dina loved looking after all these pups very much and she is already looking forward to protecting the terns at the Blakeney Point. She loves looking after animals.
      The count is quite a challenge. You can read more about the count above (under the picture of the warden in the commentaries).
      Wishing you a wonderful weekend
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

    • Lieber Peter,
      vielen Dank für deinen Kommentar 🙂 🙂 und für dein regelmäßig Kommentieren, worüber wir uns immer freuen 🙂 🙂
      Auch dir und deiner Familie ein gesundes und frohes neues Jahr!
      Wir haben gerade alle unsere Weihnachtsdekorationen abgebaut und den Weihnachtsbaum verbrannt. In England sagt man, wenn man länger als den 6. Januar die Weihnachtsdekoration im Haus lässt, then the gobblets will come and smash all the pots and pans 😉
      Nun haben die meisten Kegelrobben wieder Blakeney Point verlassen und einige schwimmen die Küste hoch nach Schottland, wo sie reiche Nahrungsgründe finden. Wenn die Kegelrobben weg sind, kommen die Seehunde, die dann im Frühsommer ihre Jungen bekommen.
      Mit lieben Grüßen vom kleinen Dorf am großen Meer
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

    • Vielen Dank für den ausführlichen Bericht über die Kegelrobben! Sie sind also keine permanenten Gäste bei Blakeney Point.
      Ich habe zwar keine Angst vor den goblets, aber auch ich werde heute oder morgen unseren schönen Weihnachtsbaum abbauen. Er ist noch so frisch wie am ersten Tag. Schade …

      Liked by 3 people

    • Ja, lieber Peter, das war mit unserem Weihnachtsbaum genauso. Er nadelte noch kein bisschen und sah noch bestens aus.
      Neben den Seehunden, die nach den Kegelrobben kommen, ist hier die große Attraktion dann die große Seeschwalbenkolonie. Allerdings war die letztes Jahr nicht so erfolgreich, da der Kestrel (Turmfalke) der Kolonie sehr zugesetzt hat. Aber darüber werden wir wohl im Sommer bloggen, wenn die Sandwitch, Arctic, Little und Common Terns hierher kommen. Es ist einer ihrer wichtigsten Brutplätze in Europa.
      Mach’s gut und halte dich wacker.
      Liebe Grüße
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 3 people

    • Dear David,
      these grey seals are sweet, aren’t they?
      We are not quite sure if you have these grey seals in California, but you have sea lions, sea elephants and harbour seals. We don’t have these seals here except the harbour seals (we call them common seals here). These common seals come when the grey seals are gone and get their pups in early summer at the Blakeney Point. You are right, all these seals are related. They belong to the Pinipeds.
      Thanks for commenting regularly here. It’s very much appreciated 🙂 🙂
      All the best
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 3 people

  27. Was für wunderfrschöne Bilder liebe Hanne!!! Um diesen Job bist du echt zu beneiden. Wer hat schon die Möglichkeit, diesen Tieren so nahe zu kommen und dabei noch mit Erlaubnis! Ein ganz wunderbareer Beitrag ihr Beiden!! Liebe Grüße aus dem langsam winterlicher werdenden Schwarzwald!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Guten Tag, lieber Konrad,
      herzlichen Dank, dass dir Dina-Hannes Bilder gut gefallen. Das war eine Action, die besten Bilder für diese Blogpost auszusuchen. Ohne Siris 🙂 und 🙂 Selmas Hilfe wären wir heute noch dabei.
      Die Kegelrobben sind jetzt aufs Meer hinausgeschwommen, teilweise zu Fressgründen nach Schottland, und nun kommen die etwas kleineren Seehunde, die hier im Frühsommer ihre Jungen bekommen.
      Leider ist es hier noch wenig winterlich. Es ist warm, so um die 5 Grad und seit Wochen wieder trocken. Wir bauten heute Morgen all unsere Weihnachtsdeko ab und Peter verbrannte unseren Weihnachtsbaum. Bleibt noch Weihnachtliches im Haus, wie die Engländer sagen, kommen die Trolle und zerdeppern Töpfe und Geschirr.
      Dir und Astrid ganz liebe Grüße from the sea(ls) 😉
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 3 people

  28. Charlee: “Those seals are very cute.”
    Chaplin: “We have sea lions around here but they aren’t as cute as that.”
    Charlee: “That’s because sea lions aren’t the same as seals, Chaplin.”
    Chaplin: “They’re all water dogs if you ask me, Charlee!”

    Liked by 4 people

    • Thank you so much, dear Jacqui 🙂 🙂
      It was a great job and it will be followed by looking after the terns at the Blakeney Point from early summer onwards.
      Wishing you a wonderful week
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 2 people

  29. Marvelous images, Dina. Your lead shot made me laugh and all your photos of these adorable creatures are beautifully shot. I also love the portrait you made of the ranger. What a great story and it’s wonderful that you are involved in this effort. Wishing the Fab Four a fantastic 2019!

    Liked by 4 people

    • Dear Jane,
      these grey seals have character, haven’t they? It seems that they are always smiling.
      In the summertime, Dina will be a tern warden out at the Blakeney Point.
      She loves to take portraits out in nature.
      Thanks a lot for your comment and for commenting regularly here. Wishing you a wonderful 2019.
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 2 people

    • Dear Julie,
      a healthy and happy New Year for you as well!
      Great that you like our post and thanks a lot for commenting regularly at our blog 🙂 🙂
      With love from the sunny sea
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 2 people

  30. Thank you for sharing these adorable photos and the story of these “soul” animals. How nice to know that their birth rate was good this season. May 2019 be a good year for them, and may most of them survive and thrive.
    I also wish the Fab Four a new year filled with many wonders.
    Best,
    Tanja

    Liked by 4 people

  31. Pingback: Blogbummel Dezember/Januar 2019 – buchpost

  32. Pingback: Den Blick einfach mal schweifen lassen – LeseLeidenschaft

  33. Fabulous images and story, Dina. It must be so satisfying to help the seals thrive. This is a case of a good partnership between humans and the wild creatures. But they do look so human with those big, beautiful eyes!

    Liked by 3 people

    • Dear Patti,
      indeed, it’s very rewarding to look after the grey seal pups. It is a perfect partnership between the seals and people that the National Trust has established on the Blakeney Point.
      Dina always tries to catch this look of these big dark eyes.
      Thank you very much for commenting.
      Wishing you a wonderful weekend
      The Fab Four of Cley
      We are out and about this weekend as it is Cley Bird Day. You walk around in little groups and have a long list of birds that are usually seen here in January and tick them off if you see them. You write down how many you saw. In the end, all the list are collected and evaluated. We went in a group with two very skilled birdwatchers today.

      Liked by 3 people

    • We saw about 45 different species of birds. When half of the people taking part in this Bird Day got their papers in we had more than 100 species of birds counted. We gave up counting the individual birds as we saw many in big flogs.

      Liked by 1 person

    • A wonderful day it was indeed. The gathering of many illustrious birdwatchers at the end of the day for the final count was particularly enjoyable (and the cakes yummy) 😋 Thank you Cley Bird Club and our team, “The Immigrants”, for organising such an event 🙏🏻

      Liked by 3 people

    • Thanks, dear Frederic 🙂 🙂
      indeed, our team was great. Four people from four different nations: French, Finnish, Norwegian and German. In addition, we had the help of an English driver; great!
      Oh dear, I forgot our beloved Bookfayries from the nation of the book-loving fairies.
      With lots of love
      Kausbernd and the rest of The Fab Four of Cley
      💃👭🚶‍♂️

      Liked by 2 people

    • Good morning, dear Sally,
      thank you very much for your comment 🙂 🙂
      Those grey seals pups are beautiful, aren’t they?
      Wishing you a happy week
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you very much, dear Tiny 🙂 🙂
      Dina fell in love with these grey seals. They are gone now and the common seals will arrive soon.
      All the best
      The Fab Four of Cley
      💃🚶‍♂️👭

      Liked by 3 people

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