Ma­rina’s on the mend af­ter boul­der-trap or­deal

Western Mail - - NEWS -

A seal trapped un­der a large boul­der for two days is re­cov­er­ing well af­ter be­ing taken to a spe­cial­ist cen­tre.

Ma­rina, pre­vi­ously known as Mir­a­cle, was res­cued from Port Tal­bot af­ter en­gi­neers raised a one-tonne block she be­came stuck un­der.

Wildlife spe­cial­ists said she was now do­ing “re­ally well” and would be re­leased back into the wild in a few months’ time.

Paul Oaten, su­per­vi­sor at the RSPCA West Hatch Wildlife cen­tre in Taun­ton, where Ma­rina is be­ing looked af­ter, said: “She is do­ing very, very well. She’s be­ing as­sisted-fed three times a day at the mo­ment. She is in a dry pen at the mo­ment which we flood at cer­tain times.

“When she first ar­rived she was not too bad con­sid­er­ing she had been through a lot.”

Paul, aged 55, added that Ma­rina was given a course of an­tibi­otics and weighed 14kg when she ar­rived. He added that she would not be re­leased un­til she reached 35kg, which would be in a “cou­ple of months”.

A state­ment on the cen­tre’s Face­book page said: “She is still be­ing as­sist-fed fish as she is un­sure how to eat for her­self but we hope she will master the skill very soon. “As you can see she is very happy.” The seal be­came trapped on Novem­ber 5 af­ter it is be­lieved she made her way un­der the sea­wall boul­ders and dropped down into a small cav­ity, from which she could not escape.

Of­fi­cers from RSPCA Cymru tried to free her but she could not be reached.

The res­cue op­er­a­tion was ham­pered by the dark con­di­tions and un­even sur­face for the rig­ging, but ev­ery­thing fell into place shortly af­ter 7pm on Novem­ber 7.

RSPCA Cymru worked with As­so­ci­ated Bri­tish Ports, Sea-Lift Div­ing, Bri­tish Divers’ Marine Life Res­cue, the RNLI and Neath Port Tal­bot Coun­cil to com­plete the res­cue.

> Ma­rina the seal

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