Seals at Pett Level

Post here if you are visiting the Hastings area and would like some more information.
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seahermit
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Seals at Pett Level

Postby seahermit » Tue Jul 23, 2019 9:54 pm

Just had a very exciting afternoon - went to Pett Level beach with a couple of friends (to the long stretch east of the sadly boarded-up Smuggler pub). Whilst we were sunbathing and swimming on a beautiful afternoon, a big seal popped his head up and watched the (few) bathers - just about twenty yards from the beach and looking very handsome with a somewhat mottled brown/grey head, very rounded and sleek. Huge dark eyes!

I have never seen one in my life before and I am amazed that he came in so close, obviously rather curious. He popped his head up several more times before moving off. I gather that seals are often seen along this stretch of shore - the sea is shallow for a quarter of a mile out, in a gently curving bay, so maybe fish come in there? I don't know about these things.

I'll try to get a photo of him next time - he was such a surprise that I forgot I was carrying a camera!

This stretch of shore is one of my favourite areas. Far from the crowded "Brighton beach" of Hastings/St Leonards, it is empty and peaceful and behind it is a wide area of marshland inhabited by sheep and a variety of interesting birds. Near to the boarded-up pub is access to the Military Canal - you can walk along it for miles through a beautiful, peaceful landscape.

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ColinL
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Re: Seals at Pett Level

Postby ColinL » Tue Jul 23, 2019 11:08 pm

Take a trip up north. I saw 10 or so seals basking in the sun by St Mary's Lighthouse near Whitley bay a couple of weeks ago. Then last week I took a boat trip around the Farne Islands and saw a fair few but also lots of puffins, shags, cormorants quite difficult to see the difference between the two as shags are a breed of cormorant, kittiwakes, and several others. The boat was able to get within about 15 feet of the rock face so we could see easily

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seahermit
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Re: Seals at Pett Level

Postby seahermit » Wed Jul 24, 2019 12:26 am

I am very obliged to you for those tips - some trips to the north of England and also to Scotland are on my list of things to do soon. Definitely with a pair of binoculars.

I'm rusty but I think shags are slightly smaller than cormorants and don't have the pronounced white dab on their "chin" plumage.

Had a very lazy day today in an idyllic spot. As in the images.
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PETT LEVEL 9.JPG

cbe
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Re: Seals at Pett Level

Postby cbe » Wed Jul 24, 2019 7:50 pm

Some years ago I walked from The Smugglers pub at Pett Level to The Dolphin in the old town. Distance not too far but those ups and downs played havoc with my leg muscles.

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seahermit
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Re: Seals at Pett Level

Postby seahermit » Fri Jul 26, 2019 2:53 am

It is all up and down and extremely rough ground in places - so sprained ankles for the unwary. But worth the effort for the stunning views.

Did you know there are beach goblins at Pett Level? They are different from the Harry Potter ones, cos they don't have pointy ears .. Image below.
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BEACH GOBLIN.JPG

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Richard
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Re: Seals at Pett Level

Postby Richard » Sat Jul 27, 2019 12:04 am

I watched the spectacle of a grey seal, at the relatively recently created 'Sovereign Harbour' complex, near Eastbourne. It held a fish in its paws and chewed away with great relish, spilling fish-blood into the water.
All very raw and visceral.
Clearly they are attracted by plentiful food supplies, not at all phased about venturing into artificial channels thus arranged.


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