Girl recovers after being pulled into water by seal.

Reply Wed 2 Sep, 2009 12:20 pm
WEST VANCOUVER, B.C. -- A five-year-old girl is shaken and staying clear of the ocean after a seal dragged her into the water from a West Vancouver dock.

Mike Cunning was cleaning salmon with his neighbour on the dock last night when he heard a splash and thought his daughter Caleigh had fallen into the water.

Cunning says he wasn't concerned because she was wearing a life jacket, but that changed when she didn't come up immediately.
When Caleigh did pop back up, she said the seal grabbed her, and the neighbour confirmed he watched the seal leap out of the water and grab the girl by the wrist from the edge of the dock.

Cunning says his daughter has been treated in hospital for puncture wounds to her hand but is otherwise OK, though she thinks it was very rude of the seal not to ask if she wanted to go for a swim.

He says seals are a common sight in the area, especially in the summer as fishermen clean their fish off the docks.

How cute, she thought the seal was rude...
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Type: Discussion • Score: 8 • Views: 2,029 • Replies: 8

Reply Wed 2 Sep, 2009 01:09 pm
You don't normally see this type of behavior in seals (or major appliances).
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Reply Wed 2 Sep, 2009 01:15 pm
Maybe it's time to quit messing with baby seals. This could be a form of retaliation.
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Reply Wed 2 Sep, 2009 02:19 pm

Was it not a sea lion??
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Reply Wed 2 Sep, 2009 02:23 pm
Has anyone alerted Seal Poet yet?

Daddy had a harbor seal
But not a friendly dude
He liked dunking little girls
And otherwise being rude.
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Reply Wed 2 Sep, 2009 02:36 pm
Hi, I'm locally in the Greater Vancouver area, but hadn't heard this story as yet.

Here's the take from our local major newspaper, the Vancouver Sun:

Seal pulls girl into water at West Vancouver marina

This does indeed seem to be an uncommon occurence, as the marina manager (who should know) said:

Thunderbird Marina manager Fred McDonald said though seals are a common sight around boats and the dock, this is the first incident he's heard of surrounding an aggressive seal.

Thanks for alerting me to the story!
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Reply Wed 2 Sep, 2009 02:40 pm
I'm in Port Moody...
I've never seen a sea lion in Van, just the zoo. I know there's a lot of them on the island. But no, Seals up here can get pretty big.
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Reply Wed 2 Sep, 2009 03:07 pm
I recently saw a couple of dead seals on the beach in Ventura. No doubt they were killed by angry fathers.
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Reply Wed 2 Sep, 2009 06:01 pm
A bit more info on this story:

Paul Cottrell, the marine mammal co-ordinator with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans.:

"Feeding marine mammals is not something that we want to happen," Cottrell said. "Feeding them directly from your hand is definitely a no, no."

Cottrell spent many years researching seals and other marine mammals and said he's heard of brazen seals doing similar things.

He said in one instance a fisherman was releasing a fish and the seal not only grabbed the fish, but bit the man's hand.

He said curious seals are also common with scuba divers where the animals nip at the divers.

"It's fairly rare, but it does happen."

Cottrell said it is very likely when the seal grabbed the girl, it thought it was getting a meal from her.

He believes the mammal was likely a harbour seal, which can weigh up to 120 kilograms when fully grown, and is a common sight along the British Columbia coastline.

excerpt from CTV.ca

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