I managed to make a few seal images while on the sound recording course and this is one of them. This is a beach near Great Yarmouth where this year about 174 pups have been counted. They are protected by seal wardens to keep members of the public at a distance, but with a 400mm lens like the one I used here good close up images are possible. Before starting the Sound recording course I had a few days on the North Norfolk Coast where I went looking for seals at Blakeney Point. After a 4 mile walk on shingle with about 30kg of gear (don’t try this for yourself – it’s knackering!) I came across a pup, its Mum and an attending male. I stayed with them for a few hours through sunshine and heavy rain and was rewarded with some great images. Apart from the usual seal portraits, I tried a few alternative views. One of these is posted below.
It took me about 11/2 hours to get close to this pup and to make sure both adult seals present were comfortable with my presence. Luckily the tide was coming in so every so often the pup would move closer to me as well. By taking this very slow approach to the seals they soon relaxed with both adults happy to leave the pup alone for a few minutes as they had a swim and relaxed in the surf.
As you can see my company was enough to send it to sleep. This is a completely relaxed pup and it is moments like this that provide a tremendous amount of satisfaction for me, as I know that my presence has been accepted and I am not causing harm to my subject. The 11/2 hour crawl on my hands and knees was worth it!
You can see the occasional seal around Gower, and a few have checked me out while I have been out on my kayak, but they don’t come onto the shore very often, if at all. Further along the coast in Pembrokshire the seals do come ashore, but the tend to know which bays are pretty much inaccessible to us humans. This results in almost aerial style images taken from the cliffs above.