Sunday 28th November comments: Its been a very tough weekend, as Storm Arwen smashed into the east coast, battering everything in its path. The predicted strong winds delivered in style, with winds recorded in some areas as touching 100mph whilst mountainous seas smashed into the Isle of May. At one stage on Saturday, the swell height at the island was above 7m, that is an entire one metre more of water than the normal peaks. Frightening stuff all round.
We’re glad to report that the island is currently clear of human activity, so everyone was safe but the cost maybe will be to the thousands of Grey Seals which are pupping at this time of year. Young seal pups must stay clear of the sea as their white coats and young age means they won’t survive very long in the cold North Sea. Thankfully the Isle of May is large and the vast majority of seal nurseries are very well sheltered so we are hoping the damage will minimal. Until we visit (we have plans to go this week), the full extent of the damage won’t be known, but we remain optimistic.
However elsewhere we suspect that seal pups were not as lucky, especially along the Berwickshire coastline (opposite the Isle of May) and on the low lying Farne Islands off the Northumberland coast. Its been a brutal and savage weekend and some pups will have paid the ultimate price. Until we visit, we can’t comment much further, so lets wait and see but expect some bad news in the forthcoming days.