A few weeks ago we wrote a blog post about a typical seal rescue, and we spoke about our Seal Rescue Network. Since then we have gotten a lot of interest, so we’ve decided to write a post to explain more about it.
Ordinary People, Extraordinary Help
Our Seal Rescue Network encompasses ordinary people who have attended some basic seal rescue training with us. This means that if we are informed about a seal in distress near where they live, we will contact them and ask them to help us.
The Rescue Network volunteers can help us in many ways, from just observing the seal or keeping it safe while help comes, to collecting the seal and transporting it either to our centre or to another volunteer who can drive then it to our centre.
We have regular seal rescue training sessions around the country, and we currently have a volunteer network of over 500 people. Due to the unpredictable nature of seal rescues these people may never get called to help, or they could be called very often!
The more volunteers we have, the less distance people have to travel to check on a seal, and the faster we can rescue them. If everyone helps out, it makes less work overall!
So what can you expect from a seal rescue training session? Well, first you’ll learn some of the basic facts about the seals we have in Ireland, and some of the common reasons that a seal might need our help (such as entangled in a net). Next, you’ll learn some key identifying points to help discover more about the seals condition, and whether or not it needs our help.
You will also learn the safe and correct way to restrain a seal, so that neither you nor the seal is harmed, and the best way to transport it safely to our centre. You can also receive some other benefits like being invited to private releases etc.
If you are interested in joining the network, our Facebook page is the best place to check and see if there is a training session coming up near you soon!