Seal in reservoir

The seal was swimming in the reservoir. Pic by Joe Francis

A SEAL has been seen swimming in Rochford reservoir. 

Rochford District Council have stated that they have been aware of the seal since before Christmas, and have been working closely with members of British Divers Marine Life Rescue (BDMLR), Environment Agency, Essex Police and Marks Hall Fisheries to rescue the seal.

 Leigh resident John Abrehart told The Leigh Times how his nephew Joe Francis saw the sea whilst fishing. 

 John said: “my Nephew Joe saw it at Rochford Reservoir opposite the Horse & Groom Pub when he went fishing with his friends.

 “Joe realised it was there when the seal surfaced out of the water with a fish in his mouth.”

  Jon added that this was the first time he’s known of such an occurrence: “Joe and I have seen many seals in the past when we’ve been on boat fishing trips out from Wallasea Island where there’s a substantial seal colony off of the Foulness Sands, but we’ve never seen on in this vicinity!” 

 A two-day rescue attempt carried out earlier this week by the council was unfortunately unsuccessful. 

 Following recommendations from marine experts, a fishing ban has been imposed upon the lake until further notice.

Rochford District Council’s Portfolio Holder for the Environment, Coun Dave Sperring asked people to avoid the reservoir, and keep their dogs on a lead:

He said: “We apologise for any inconvenience to fishers, but would ask all residents to keep their distance from the area for the safety of the seal and for themselves, and please keep your dog on a lead.”

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