emerald beach visitor
Rescue staff from Dolphin Marine Magic continue to monitor the
condition of a New Zealand fur seal washed onto the shore at Emerald
A concerned member of the public alerted Dolphin Marine Magic staff Thursday night that the seal may be in distress and a search was
launched after dark by Life Sciences Manager Aaron Tolley.
“Unable to see the fur seal in the dark, we headed back to Emerald
Beach on Friday morning to locate it and assess the condition,” he said.
“We found the seal resting on a rock platform and it had a number of
cookie-cutter shark bites on its body.”
The cookie-cutter shark grows to about two feet long as an adult but
have specially crafted jaws that can scoop out a nugget of flesh, leaving a
gaping hole, hence the ‘cookie-cutter’ name.
“Their bites aren’t lethal but the bites leave obvious markings, even
after they’ve healed.”
“Despite the number of bites on its body, the animal was in good
condition, alert and able to move quickly to the water.”
“We are continuing to monitor the seal. However, the greatest danger is dog attack as the seal is resting on a
popular dog walking beach and we ask members of the public to keep their dogs on a leash
and under control if they observe the seal in the vicinity.”