A grey seal that experts believe may have been physically carried by high tides onto a local street during a recent nor’easter is improving under the care of the Marine Mammal Stranding Center, the center staff reported this week among a number of updates on their patients.
The female seal pup, estimated to be just about four weeks old when it was found by a jogger during a late-night lull in the Jan. 12 storm on an asphalt street in Point Pleasant Beach, is looking significantly healthier than when it was first brought to the center under touch-and-go health status. The small seal, seemingly smiling “ear-to-ear” at the center, is now eating 7.5-pounds of fish each day. When she was first brought to the center, she was admitted to the ICU largely unable to eat on her own, having to be fed through a tube.
“This little girl has a big appetite,” the center said in its update, adding that the little one is enjoying a diet of capelin, herring, and mackerel, as well as squid.
The seal began eating on her own last week, the center said, having first started off with 4.5-pounds of food each day. That has nearly doubled in a single week – a sure sign of a seal well on her way to recovery.
After being found by the jogger, who called police, officers from the Point Pleasant Beach Police Department kept traffic out of the way until 1:30 a.m. when technicians from the center arrived and took the seal into their care.
The Marine Mammal Stranding Center, located in Brigantine, operates medical and rehabilitation facilities for marine mammals with the intent of releasing them back into the wild when they are strong enough to survive on their own.