Rescued Seal Pup Dubbed 'Moaning Myrtle'
The sorrowful wailing of a seal pup rescued with fishing net fast round her neck has earned her the name Myrtle…after the Hogwarts ghost.

Myrtle the grey seal pup has plenty to wail about; however, as the nylon netting has left her with a wound an inch-and-a-half wide and an inch deep right around her neck.

She was spotted in obvious difficulties in a cove at St Ives Bay by members of the British Divers Marine Life Rescue organisation.
The Sanctuary was alerted and a rescue mission mounted which saw animal care assistant Dan Jarvis risking life and limb to trap Myrtle so she could receive the life-saving care she was in desperate need of.

"We've seen this same sort of injury a few times before," said Dan, who abseiled down a steep cliff and ended up taking an icy dip before finally getting Myrtle caged.

"She obviously got the netting caught round her neck when she was very young, and as she's grown, it's gradually scythed deeper and deeper into her skin."

The netting had cut through her protective blubber and she was being slowly strangled, but happily she was rescued in the nick of time.

"Dan removed the netting straight away and Myrtle is now recovering slowly in our seal hospital, where she is being treated with antibiotics," said the Sanctuary's Laura Ward.

"Even though she's now undoubtedly a lot more comfortable than she has been for quite some time, that isn't stopping her constant howling….which is why we named her after Moaning Myrtle."

The Sanctuary is more frequently finding seals with netting injuries, prompting fresh calls for fishermen to take care not to lose or discard scraps of netting at sea, and to the general public to collect and destroy any netting fragments they may come across on the shoreline.

All being well, Myrtle should be sufficiently recovered to return to the wild in a couple of months.

The naming of Myrtle comes after a new theme set by the Sanctuary using Harry Potter as inspiration.

"This seasons pups will be named after the characters from the Harry Potter series and the name 'Moaning Myrtle' definitely suits her!" said Laura.
Press Release issued by: The National Seal Sanctuary
For more details, please contact Laura Ward on 01326 221361
Date: 21st July 2009

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