First seal pup of the year born on Farne Islands

There's approximately 5,000 seal pups on the Farne Islands

The first seal pup of the year has been born on the Farne Islands off the Northumberland Coast, marking the start of this year’s annual seal count.

Every year, over 1,500 pups are born on the islands, which is the largest Atlantic grey seal colony in England. Islands’ resident Rangers from conservation charity the National Trust spend three months each autumn monitoring the breeding seals. Last year, 1,575 pups were born taking the overall Farnes population to an estimated 5,000.

Seal breeding season is underway

As this year’s seal breeding season gets underway, the National Trust isoffering visitors to the Islands an opportunity to get up close tothe seals.

From today until October 31, tours will take place daily with boatsleaving from Seahouses Harbour.

Visitors can get up close to the seals

The breeding season for seals on the Farnes can sometimes start as earlyas September with the majority of pups being born in October and November. Although the pups can swim at an early age they don’t normally leave the breeding colony until they have been weaned and moulted their white coats.