Seal of Approval for Chiswick Pier

Marine visitor turns up on pontoon by the Thames

Seal of Approval for Chiswick Pier
Picture: @ChiswickPier


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An unusual visitor was spotted on the Chiswick Pier pontoon this Monday morning (20 November) when a seal took up residence for a while.

The seal climbed onto the pontoon and then reappeared nearby on the foreshore a couple of hours later.

Kate Vick of Chiswick Pier Trust said, "We’ve been seeing a seal on and off for a few months. Putting aside our feelings that Chiswick Pier Trust has the best office view in London, this seal is just one example of the variety of wildlife we see around the Thames every day, and why the river is a wonderful place to visit and nurture. We’re not sure why the seal is here and, as usual, we ask members of the public please not to approach it if they are lucky enough to see it!"

What is thought to be the same seal was spotted again on the foreshore off Oliver's Island on Wednesday at around midday.

Seal seen off Oliver's Island near Strand on the Green. Picture: June Hoare

Grey seals have been spotted in the tidal section of the Thames quite regularly over the last few years and it is claimed this is a sign of improving water quality. They are often seen by rowers and fishermen. The seals will only come this far up the river if there are ample fish stocks for them.

Unlike the dolphin that was spotted in the same location recently there is no extra risk to the animal being in this stretch of water.

Over the last 13 years over 2,000 marine mammal sightings have been reported to the Zoological Society of London from the Thames. These sightings have demonstrated that seals and porpoises are regular visitors in the Thames all the way up to Teddington lock. They encourage members of the public to report these sightings to them so they can better understand their distribution.

November 23, 2017

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