A harbour seal mom and pup have been spending time near the BRNKL seal station camera at the Oak Bay Marina. (Courtesy of Brandon Wright)

VIDEO: Seal pup and mom play and ‘kiss’ in Oak Bay Marina

BRNKL seal cam captures harbour seal growing up in busy harbour

The Oak Bay Marina’s newest resident is less than two feet long.

A harbour seal and her pup have taken to spending time at the marina near the fish cleaning station, according to Barnacle Systems Inc., a local boat security company that’s been capturing the mom and pup with a live seal cam.

The pup, which staff first noticed about two weeks ago when it was very “fresh” and “about the size of a football,” has since grown to about two feet long.

“The pup is piggybacking on the mom and nursing, now it’s playing and splashing around,” said Brandon Wright, Barnacle Systems CEO, adding that it appears many times as if the pup and its mother are giving each other kisses. The mom sometimes leaves the pup beneath the floating dock while she hunts.

The Marine Mammal Rescue Centre, while happy to hear of the pup and its mom, warn the public to keep a safe distance – both for the seals and themselves.

“Pups only spend four to six weeks with their mom. They have a long way to go in a short period of time,” said Lindsaye Akhurst, manager of Ocean Wise Marine Mammal Rescue. “Respecting that space is hugely important.”

Akhurst said the live cam is an excellent way to get close to the wildlife.

“You can get that up close and personal look at the animal without disrespecting their space,” she said.

READ ALSO: Seal pup rescued from Willows Beach responding well to treatment

The Oak Bay company installed the seal camera last year and the livestream took off in popularity, sometimes bringing in close to 6,000 viewers at a time.

Now the pup and mom, who is known around the marina as Clarice, are drawing the adoration of both marina-users and at-home viewers.

The company’s BRNKL boat security system has been used before at the marina. Since December, BRNKL cameras have captured a boat theft, a boat fire and now – a new baby.

“Between catching baby seals and boat thefts its been a pretty neat time,” Wright said.

The live seal cam is available online at Youtube.com.

With pupping season in full swing from June to October, Akhurst reminds the public that not all unattended pups are in need of assistance.

“It is normal for pups to be by themselves,” she said. “As cute and defenceless as they look, it is natural.”

If people observe an animal they believe to be in need of assistance, they can call the Marine Mammal Rescue at 604-836-7989. To report a person disturbing a marine mammal, call the incident reporting hotline at Fisheries and Oceans Canada at 1-800-465-4336.

READ ALSO: Leave them alone: Vancouver Aquarium issues warning after several seal pups ‘disturbed’


Do you have something to add to this story, or something else we should report on? Email: nina.grossman@blackpress.ca. Follow us on Instagram.
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

oak bayseals

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Williams Lake First Nation inks historic cannabis deal with B.C. government

The agreement paves the way for WLFN to sell cannabis to the government, and open stores across B.C.

Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Sept. 20 to 26

Rabbit Day, Hobbit Day and One-Hit Wonder Day are all coming up this week

Interior Health reports three additional COVID-19 cases in region

The number of cases in the region since the beginning of the pandemic are now at 492

Vehicle found “burnt to a crisp” off of Hwy 5

Update from Clearwater RCMP detachment

COVID-19: 4 more deaths, 366 new cases in B.C. since Friday

A total of 8,208 people in B.C. have tested positive for COVID-19 since January

16 COVID-19 cases reported in Interior Health region

One person is in hospital and 34 people are isolating

Group wants Parliament, courts to hold social media to same standard as publishers

Daniel Bernhard made the comments shortly after Friends of Canadian Broadcasting released a research paper

B.C.’s Chase Claypool catches first NFL touchdown pass

Abbotsford grad establishes new record for longest scrimmage TD by a Canadian

B.C. has highest number of active COVID-19 cases per capita, federal data shows

B.C. currently has 1,803 active cases after weeks of COVID-19 spikes in the province

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

181 days gone: Family continues to look for man last seen in RCMP custody 6 months ago

Brandon Sakebow’s last known location was leaving Mission RCMP cell, police say; family has doubts

B.C. unveils new cannabis sales programs to help small, Indigenous growers

Government did not say how it will define small producers, but says nurseries will be included in the policy

Most Read