NZ fur seal alert at Emerald Beach
RESCUE staff from Dolphin Marine Magic continue to monitor the condition of a New Zealand fur seal washed onto the shore at Emerald Beach.
A concerned member of the public alerted the veterinary staff in Coffs Harbour on Thursday night that the seal may be in distress and a search was launched after dark by Life Sciences Manager Aaron Tolley.
"Unable to see the fur seal in the dark, we headed back to Emerald Beach on Friday morning to locate it and assess the condition," he said.
"We found the seal resting on a rock platform and it had a number of cookie-cutter shark bites on its body."
The cookie-cutter shark grows to about two feet long as an adult but have specially crafted jaws that can scoop out a nugget of flesh, leaving a gaping hole, hence the 'cookie-cutter' name.
"Their bites aren't lethal but the bites leave obvious markings, even after they've healed.
"Despite the number of bites on its body, the animal was in good condition, alert and able to move quickly to the water.
"We are continuing to monitor the seal.
"However, the greatest danger is dog attack as the seal is resting on a popular dog beach and we ask members of the public to keep their dogs on a leash and under control if they observe the seal in the vicinity."