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Common Seal Phoca vitulina Length 1.2-1.9m Has a ‘friendly’-looking face. Hauled-out seals are easy to observe. Adult is greyish brown but variably mottled with darker spots. Underside is paler than upperside. Dry coat looks shiny if coated in sand. Bridge of nose has concave outline (convex in Grey Seal) and muzzle is blunt, creating a dog-like appearance. Seen from front, nostrils are close together at base and splayed in V-shaped fashion (separated from, and more parallel to, one another in Grey Seal). Front flippers have claws and powerful hind flippers effect propulsion when swimming. Males are larger and heavier than females. Pup is born with marbled grey-brown coat. Widespread on E coast of England and around Scotland and Ireland generally.
- © PAUL STERRY/Nature Photographers
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