Wildlife representatives warn park visitors and nature lovers not to take selfies with seals. Even though the creatures have such an appealing appearance, the National Oceanic and Atmosphere Administration says it would be better to avoid interfering with these small animals.
Smartphones created a whole new era of selfies, and people seem incapable of stopping the urge to take pictures of themselves with all kind of animals and wildlife.
Having the phone in their hand mirroring the scene behind them gives them a sense of control they may not have otherwise if the picture were to be taken by somebody else and they had to stay with their backs facing a wild creature.
Seals Are Wild Animals Too
There are many examples of how dangerous such an adventure can turn out to be. People tried to take pictures with bears, snakes or sharks, and the animals were not as cooperative as they thought.
Even if it’s hard to describe a seal as being dangerous, it’s still a wild creature. It has certain behaviors and habits, and taking selfies with people might just not be one of them.
The Oceanic Agency warns visitors to do the right thing and leave the seals alone, no matter how irresistible it would be to have a picture with such cute creatures. Going further, it adds that getting too close to a wild animal may put the person and also the animal at risk.
The Cute Seals Can Fight Back
The warning contains a lot of pictures – not selfies – with blood and injuries, people screaming, and emergency response teams in action.
As cute as they seem, seals have powerful jaws.
The agency says it has already received reports of human injuries because of people getting too close to seals when trying to take a selfie.
It seems that seals, too, can feel stressed or threatened when a person gets too close to them. Animals usually act unpredictable when they are affected by stress. Thus, it would be better to keep the distance in order to avoid any potential dangerous responses from an animal that feels harassed.
People are advised to maintain a distance of 150 feet from any seal they may ever encounter.
The agency also notes that baby seals may be more curious than the older ones and come by themselves to investigate what would be for them a new creature – a human. Aside from refraining from any handling, people should also take notice that the mother may be around, and she may not be too happy to see her puppy taking pictures with a stranger.
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