Common Seals in Clew Bay

One of the most interesting marine mammals in Clew Bay is the Common Seal. Clew Bay’s archipelago of islands hosts a number of seal haul outs where seals can be seen from passing boats.

Common Seal, Stony Island, Clew Bay, County Mayo. 2017
Common seals come to shore during June to give birth and mate again around this time but usually in the water. Pups are capable of swimming within a few hours of being born but stay with their mother until weaned. Common Seals also come to shore to moult (shed their fur) during July and August often forming large groups on sheltered shores that have ready access to the sea.

Common seals normally feed within 40-50 km around haul out sites. They take a wide variety of prey including sandeels, whitefish, herring and sprat, flatfish, octopus and squid. Diet varies seasonally and from region to region. Because of their smaller size, common seals eat less food than grey seals, perhaps 3-5 kg per day depending on the prey species.

If you would like to come seal watching. Book a trip in “Rebecca,” for a morning or            afternoon, weather permitting, by calling Shay at 0834658374 or for availability email




Published by shayfennelly

Marine scientist and photographer. Interested in all marine ecology, exploration, science and technology.

2 thoughts on “Common Seals in Clew Bay

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: