Why are we seeing more dead seals?

A deceased male grey seal on Courtown Beach, County Wexford. Photo by Chris Parkes

This month, we were busy raising the alarm about the huge rise in dead seals washing up and being reported across Ireland’s coastlines.

In 2020 SRI recorded a total of 202 dead seal reports, nearly DOUBLE that of 2019! And the trend continues: so far 2021 is starting off strong, with double the numbers reported from this time in 2020.

While this growth in reporting is likely due in part to the greater number of people walking on beaches, there is nevertheless a strong indication that negative environmental factors are at play.

Reports of dead seals made by the public provide SRI with invaluable data to gain insight into our wild populations and identify unusual cases or problematic areas. Each year SRI submits this data to the National Parks and Wildlife Service.

Together we can both better understand threats facing seals in the wild and work together to develop strategies to reduce these dangers. We rely on you, the public, to report dead seals to us. The more reports we receive, the more accurate and comprehensive our database will be.

You can now help our research by reporting your sightings through our website!


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