Grey seal by Jackie Dent 1/10
Grey seal by Colin Eve 2/10
Grey seal by David Savory 3/10
Grey seals by Paul Charnock 4/10
Grey seal pup by Nick Goodrum 5/10
Grey seal with young by Norman Wyatt 6/10
Grey seals by Cliff Cole 7/10
Grey seal with pup by Jackie Dent 8/10
Grey seal by Peter Dent 9/10
Grey seal by Pat Adams 10/10

Grey Seal Halichoerus grypus

The grey seal is the most common of the two British seal species, the other being the common or harbour seal.
The pups are born with white fur that is not waterproof and this gradually changes colour as it gains its waterproof juvenile coat. When this moult is complete it is ready to go out to sea to find food. The females only stay and feed their pups for about 3 weeks but during that time the pups grow quickly gaining about 2kg a day. The females leave their pups on the beach returning to feed them.

Conservation status

The grey seal population in Norfolk is thriving with about 2,000 pups born at Blakeney Point and 1,000 at Horsey Beach. About 50% of the world population of grey seals lives around the British Coast so Norfolk is an important breeding area for them.


Did you know? The Latin name for the grey seal means hook-nosed sea pig and a colony of breeding seals is a rookery.
A seal’s milk is 60% fat and although the female will mate shortly after the birth of her pup, the fertilised egg does not start to develop until much later. This allows the pup to be born the same time the following year.
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