Adorable seal spotted swimming near Exeter Quay

The seal was spotted on Salmonpool Lane in Exeter
-Credit: (Image: Carley Louise Densham)

An adorable seal was spotted in the River Exe over the weekend. Pictures sent to Devon Live show the animal swimming in Exeter yesterday morning (Saturday, June 8). The seal was snapped near Salmonpool Lane at around 10am.

It can be seen swimming underwater and coming up for air. Harbour seals are no stranger to the River Exe. One was previously sighted relaxing upon a rock near Exeter Quay.

Steve Hussey, communications specialist officer for Devon Wildlife Trust, said: "It is a harbour seal. It was happily hauled out on a rock near Salmon Pool Lane, which is around a mile from Exeter Quay. I have seen seals there before but they were Atlantic grey seals.


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"Harbour seals aren't as common in the South West as grey seals. It has probably followed fish up the Estuary and was hauled out to digest its meal."

The seal was sighted swimming in the River Exe
The seal was sighted swimming in the River Exe

Harbour seals are distinctive and are usually found in coastal and marshland areas. Their average size is 140-185 cm, including flippers of about 20 cm.

Meanwhile, common seals feed at sea but regularly haul out on to rocky shores or inter-tidal sandbanks to rest, or to give birth and to suckle their pups. They eat a wide variety of fish, including herring, sand eels, whiting and flatfish.