Hands up if you love Seals!?

We desperately want to start a 3-year project to help protect Atlantic grey seals. So far this appeal has raised £4,760. BUT we still need to raise the final £1,191 to secure an October 2019 start date. Please donate what you can to get this project off the ground.

Please donate today to help to get this project off the ground.

Although grey seals appear to be abundant around Scilly, they are a globally rare species; there are more red squirrels in the UK than there are Atlantic grey seals.

The Isles of Scilly contains the largest concentration of seals in the West Country, contributing 41% of regional pupping. Threats in Scilly could have fatal consequences for the whole seal population for which Scilly is a geographical hub.

As Scilly's champions of nature, the Isles of Scilly Wildlife Trust is keen to make sure that any current or developing tourism operations have the health and success of our Atlantic grey seal populations at the forefront of their minds. A healthy and viable seal population means a healthy and viable tourism economy! It is imperative that all who live, work and visit our Islands understand the impact their actions could have on grey seals and how they can minimise any negative repercussions to ensure people can visit the Islands and enjoy seeing the seals for years to come.

This is why we need your donation. It's so important that we understand the impacts of tourism activity on seals to fully protect them in future conservation work. We need to be in a position to know what we can do and what we can encourage others to do to ensure that this vital population remains healthy and happy and thrives in its natural environment.

If you make a donation today, your money will be used to buy high-powered binoculars required to view and count seals so that minimum distances can be maintained as recommended by WiSe (Wildlife Safe training) protocols. It will be necessary to purchase an SLR/Bridge camera with sufficient zoom which will enable the team to take photos to confirm counts, age, gender and health difficulties (ie entanglement), ensuring data collected is as accurate as possible. A tablet is also needed for recording data efficiently during surveying.

Your donation means we will be closer to hitting our £5,951 appeal target and we can start this project in October 2019. We are nearly there so please help us reach this target! The data collected will shape the future conservation work of the Isles of Scilly Wildlife Trust and its partners. It will inform practical marine conservation activity as well as guide marine education work with residents and visitors, particularly in relation to seal health, evidence regarding the effects of disturbance and how we can counteract the difficulties that our seals face with an ever-growing, mobile, resident and visiting human population.

This project could lead to better protection at other sites used by Atlantic grey seals which currently aren't afforded the same amount of environmental protection as Scilly, meaning our project could have positive outcomes beyond Scilly.

So, if you love Scilly, love the sea and love seals please make a donation today.

With thanks for the use of Underwater Atlantic Grey Seal Image © Tim Allsop