It’s getting close to that time of the year when the seals are starting to gather around the islands as the cows are very heavily pregnant. At this time of the year the seals are very playful with the divers, and they come from far and wide to dive with the seals. They say it’s like playing with a small puppy.
My brother, Toby and Ron, our very experienced skipper. Take out the divers on Sovereign 2 and 3 and when it gets to this time of the year the divers tend to just want to dive with the seals. Yes, the islands has alot more to offer than just the seals, but in Sept, Oct, Nov and Dec the seals are so playful that once the divers have had dived with them they can’t get enough.
The yearlings are really playful and often play hide and seek, nibble the divers fins then swim away like naughty little school kids. They often cause confusion amoungst divers by tugging on their fins as they swim along and the diver assumes it’s his buddy.
With the older cows you can play games. I often heard divers say they where blowing bubbles on purpose and the seals was copying them.
Other favourite’s are….. Waving their hands and the seals copy……Spinning around……..but what really bugs seals is if the divers try to put their heads between their legs as the seals can’t do it!!!!!!
The seals also get very itchy and loved to be scratched. You often see seals asleep on the bottom but it’s usually on a gravel patch as they can scratch themselves while they are there.
You can always tell if a seal needs a scratch, as the divers put their hand out and the seal goes stright over. I’ve heard of divers scratching the seal’s tummy and the seal just rolls over enjoying every moment of it.
We often say don’t be scared of a seal as they will never hurt you. Yes, they do get to playful sometimes and push the boundaries with a nip or a little bite on the head but I have never heard of a diver being badly hurt by a seal.
You always have to remember that you are in their territory and one kick of its tail and it’s gone.
On the land they are very vulnerable and they can’t get away very easily and they will bite you hard. Just ask the Wardens as they are very aggressive toward them when they are tiring to do there seal counts.
Divers say that you can dive all around the world, but you will never get interaction like this anywhere else.
Here are some pictures I have been given over the years. Enjoy.