Warm feet, warm hearts

Today’s weather brought welcome relief from the bitter cold for six much happier feet. Based on the more relaxed day of observations it seems as though the seals also noticed the change, and took some time off from fighting to enjoy the warmer weather! It is interesting to see how the behaviour of the individuals change across the breeding season and it seems to be getting towards that stage in the season when the attention of the males turns more towards the females. According to Amy’s data this transition happened at about the same time last year. The males appear to have sorted out a lot of their major arguments and have established stability in their daily locations by the time the first pups are weaned  and the females are ready for mating. Of course, this doesn’t happen across the colony all at once. There are still pups of all ages littered around. In fact, Sam and I witnessed a birth directly in front of the hide this morning, which has left this little guy (girl?!) and a proud mum for Sam to add to his sample for behavioural observations.

Later in the day after drying off

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