A baby seal was caught on video hitching a ride on top of a rowing shell in Vancouver’s Coal Harbour yesterday afternoon.
Annette O’Shea, a coach with the Vancouver Rowing Club, says she was out on a practice run with a group of rowers near the sea plane dock when they saw the baby seal take interest in their boat.
“At our turnaround spot, our boats stopped for a minute and that is when he heaved himself up onto the bow.”
O’Shea says the baby seal wiggled about six feet along the bow, snuggled up behind the first rower and started to snooze.
“So the rowers said, let’s keep rowing and maybe he will jump off. But he did not. He stayed with us for over an hour!”
O’Shea says all this time the baby seal looked really comfortable and never made a sound.
Eventually the group saw an adult seal that was close to the shore near Deadman’s Island and looked like she was looking for a cub.
“That is when we kind of pulled over and tickled him and said, that might be your mom.”
O’Shea says she see seals in Coal Harbour all the time and occasionally sees babies, but in her ten years rowing in Vancouver, she has never seen a baby seal get up onto a boat before.
“We’ve had lots of conversations with the Vancouver aquarium, and they tell us that moms usually leave babies in one spot, usually on dry land, while they go and hunt for a few hours, and the baby is supposed to stay there. They are not supposed to leave and then get up onto a boat.”