A seal found dead in Yamachiche
A seal measuring a little over a meter was found by a citizen on the shores of Lake Saint-Pierre, Yamachiche, Saturday morning. The citizen who found the animal made the surprising discovery when he was going to mow his lawn.
J onathan Caron-Dupuis immediately contacted the Marine Mammal Emergencies agency, which sent a volunteer to the scene. The latter came to measure the animal in question in addition to taking several photos so that they are evaluated to determine the possible causes of death of the animal.
The seal whose species has not yet been determined was very badly damaged when it was discovered. Mr. Caron-Dupuis speculates that the animal was struck by a boat and crawled to the place where it was found. On the other hand, the owner of Zoo Academy of Nicolet, Jacinthe Bouchard, considers rather that it would have been dragged by an animal. “A seal is too fast and agile to be hit by a boat. It’s not impossible, but it would surprise me a lot because they can swim up to 100 meters deep and up to 30 minutes. If that had been the case, he would not have saved himself on the ground, but would have drowned. It’s probably an animal like a coyote who went to get him near the water and dragged him there, “she says.
The animal was in a sorry state, while part of his head was covered in blood.
As the seal was found a few hundred meters from Lake St. Pierre, it would be impossible, according to information collected, that it was washed away by the tide. According to the smells he emitted and the state in which he was, the animal could be at this place since a few days already.
Although this kind of animal lives mostly in salt water, it is not uncommon to see in fresh water as is the case for Lake Saint-Pierre. “It happens regularly, more than we think. Yes, they stay longer in the Gaspésie area, but it’s not unusual to see them here too, “continued Ms. Bouchard.
According to the Marine Mammal Research and Education Research Group (GREMM) Communications Officer, Marie-Ève Muller, there have been several recent reports of a bearded seal seen in the area. However, it is too early to determine the causes of death and the exact species of the animal found Saturday.
The seal was found a few hundred meters from Lake St. Pierre, so it would not have been washed away by the tide.
The Ministry of the Environment and the Fight Against Climate Change should contact the Municipality of Yamachiche on Monday to determine what will happen with the carcass of the animal. “We are not sure yet what will happen to the carcass since a team of veterinarians must evaluate it. It is the department and the municipality that will decide together when it will be withdrawn, “confirmed Ms. Muller.
More information should be available in the coming days, particularly following the medical evaluation.