The seal might be a Sally, but Marine Mammal Stranding Center co-director Robert Schoelkopf said yesterday it was too early to tell its gender.
The marine center, in Brigantine, sent a staffer to see the seal yesterday but after watching it determined it was not stranded. The center will not take action unless an animal appears to be sick, injured, or seriously stranded and not able to free itself back into the water.
As of yesterday, Sally the seal was just that, a seal, and appeared to about 80 pounds. Harp seals are used to hanging out on an ice floe on the Arctic Ocean, and since residents saw it eating, it's probably happy, Schoelkopf said.
"I saw it with a fish in it's mouth this morning," Chris Krupa said yesterday.
With warm waters and a food supply, Sally is probably summering in the area, Schoelkopf theorized.
"You know how New Jerseyans go to Florida every winter, well (seals) come down here from the Arctic," he said. "It's a heckuva lot warmer here."
Florida has snowbirds; we get snowseals!