Sanctuary rescues first seal of the year after ill pup found near pier

Hillswick Wildlife Sanctuary received a call after the freshly moulted grey pup was found in Shetland.

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A sanctuary has rescued its first seal pup of the year after the stricken animal was discovered near a pier in Shetland.

Hillswick Wildlife Sanctuary received a call after the freshly moulted grey pup was found lying on a patch of grass by the old Grutness Pier “looking miserable”.

The Scottish SPCA assisted in the rescue by catching the pup just before dark on Sunday and drove him to the sanctuary for treatment.

A spokesperson for the sanctuary said: “Though he is a decent size for a young grey seal, he is quite thin and his breathing is not good.

“The fact that people were able to approach him without him heading for the sea was a sure sign he was not well.

“In fact when they approached him he headed in the opposite direction towards the road.”

The seal, named Gerald by rescuers, is currently resting at the facility’s seal pen and will be treated for lungworm.

The spokesperson added: “We will work on building up his strength to go back to the wild as soon as possible.”