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Grey Seal ? (1 Viewer)

Eos9

Well-known member
United Kingdom
Having previously been told that the seal in there photograph was a Common Seal, I have now been advised by someone who is knowledgeable with seals it is in fact a Grey Seal.
I would appreciate firstly that this is indeed the case and secondly how best to identify between the two when viewed face on as in the photo.
I find it easier to identify when viewed in side profile where to me the shape of the head and longer snout of the Grey is probably more apparent. Any Tips therefore much appreciated.

Thanks.
 

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As stated above its a common seal, I made an easy ID guide on this thread


hope it helps

Mark
 
As stated above its a common seal, I made an easy ID guide on this thread


hope it helps

Mark
Hi Mark, I had in fact had this down as a Common Seal myself and posted it as such on a social media platform. However I then had a message from someone I knew who amongst other things monitored and surveyed Seal populations. They informed me that it was in fact a Grey Seal ...I'm sure you can understand now why I'm left somewhat confused regrading the ID. Either I'm mistaken in having it down as Common or they despite their experience regarding seals has misinformed me.
 
What reason were you given for your friend’s claim of Grey Seal? As far as I can tell it is a non-controversial Common, but am willing to learn if there is anything I am missing! Mind you, if John and Mark are both happy, then the evidence for a different identification needs to be significant!
 
What reason were you given for your friend’s claim of Grey Seal? As far as I can tell it is a non-controversial Common, but am willing to learn if there is anything I am missing! Mind you, if John and Mark are both happy, then the evidence for a different identification needs to be significant!
 
Hi, I have now queried this with him and he firstly suggests that Grey & Common can in fact lay tail up or in the "banana" position when at rest.
He then refers to what he calls the "smile" he attributes to the Common Seal and not a feature of Grey which he felt was lacking in the photo..
The facial markings are he feels more a feature of Grey with Common "generally" having a much plainer face.
I did question the head shape and short muzzle and he did agree the latter seemed quite short. He also mentioned the shape of the nose being like a V shape being mentioned in some books & not in others.
For me ( and I'm no expert ) the physical features elude to it being a Common but the markings do seem a bit more in line with a Grey. That said I understand markings can be variable so I'm not entirely sure how reliable this is alone. The comment he made about the "smile" associated to Common is a something I've not read about before so I can't be sure how reliable this is regarding ID.
 
Hi, I have now queried this with him and he firstly suggests that Grey & Common can in fact lay tail up or in the "banana" position when at rest.
He then refers to what he calls the "smile" he attributes to the Common Seal and not a feature of Grey which he felt was lacking in the photo..
The facial markings are he feels more a feature of Grey with Common "generally" having a much plainer face.
I did question the head shape and short muzzle and he did agree the latter seemed quite short. He also mentioned the shape of the nose being like a V shape being mentioned in some books & not in others.
For me ( and I'm no expert ) the physical features elude to it being a Common but the markings do seem a bit more in line with a Grey. That said I understand markings can be variable so I'm not entirely sure how reliable this is alone. The comment he made about the "smile" associated to Common is a something I've not read about before so I can't be sure how reliable this is regarding ID.
You can't go on the markings and the animal in the photo is well within the normal range of markings of Common Seal. Structurally it is a Common Seal. In fact, it is a Common Seal.

John
 

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