Mother seals fight gallantly for their pups

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Tuesday, February 7, 2006

Pictou Island had 2,000 to 3,000 seals on it when struck by a "severe" storm that buried the tiny Canadian island in snow and created rough ocean effects Wednesday and Thursday.

Jane MacDonald, an island resident, said that she woke up Thursday morning to see "wall to wall seals" and their puppies "decimated" by the storm.

MacDonald commented, "The seal puppies were literally swept away into the water because their mothers couldn't get them to higher ground. A wave would hit and the pup went under. The mother pushed it up with her nose, and then another wave would hit."

"After the sixth or seventh wave, the pup didn't come up," MacDonald said. "The more you watched, the worse it got. The mothers struggled so hard to save their babies and it just couldn't be done, I'd never seen anything like that."

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