After eleven months' gestation the female Grey Seal gives birth to one single pup.Grey Seals haul out on their traditional breeding grounds on rocky islands and sandy bays off the West of Ireland. The young seals are born into a harsh environment and within weeks have to survive the oncoming winter. The pups keep their white curly coats and cling to the land for two perilous weeks. Their mother's milk is so rich in fat that they put on pounds every day. After being pushed and shoved a great deal they finally overcome their fear of water. Toward the end of autumn the bull herds together the cows which belong to him and soon afterwards hunger forces their deserted young to learn to fish. I spotted these seals mating in the water when I was photographing the young which had recently been born.It was a scene I had not witnessed before and was lucky to capture it in fairly shallow water with the waves breaking.
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