River seal identified and is healthy, experts say

Hampden County

HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – A fisherman spotted this one-year-old harbor seal in the Connecticut River in South Hadley Wednesday, and 22News shot a lot of video of him in the water, and on the riverbanks in Holyoke Thursday afternoon.

The New England Aquarium came from Boston to check on the seal, whose name, they said, is “Laysan.” While it’s unusual he’s in the area, in fresh water, he’s in no danger.

People along the river Friday were disappointed not to see him Friday.

Thomas Morse told 22News, “I would have liked to see him but I think he’s probably better off going back to the ocean. A little more food down there.”

Although harbor seals are predominately found in saltwater, the New England Aquarium told us that it’s okay that he’s here in freshwater he can live here for a few weeks.

 George Willard told 22News, “That thing came from where I think Rhode Island, he came up here and then when he gets tired of it and saying hey there’s no more fish maybe he’ll go back.”

The New England Aquarium told 22News that seals are very smart and it’s likely he’s not lost, just exploring.

Although the seal hasn’t been seen since Thursday, he could still be in the area. If you see him, Remember to keep a distance of 150-feet away.  It’s for your safety, as well as Laysan’s.

The New England Aquarium reminds boaters to be vigilant while on the river this weekend.

Your boat can be very dangerous to the seal. 

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