Lagan weir gets a seal of approval

Lisburn's resident seal makes a return appearance in the Lagan.
Lisburn's resident seal makes a return appearance in the Lagan.

Lisburn’s resident seal has put in another appearance, stepping out under grey skies to negotiate the Lagan weir at Queen’s Bridge.

Courtesy of Malcolm Kinghan, who photographed the lunchtime outing, our pictures chart the local sealebrity’s progress upriver.

It was almost a year ago when last the pinniped’s periodic visits brought it to public attention.

Then, visiting Dromore man Dean Banks and his cousin were out walking the dogwhen they spotted the seal, if only after the observant dog dog pointed them in the right direction “We couldn’t make out what it was at first,” said Dean at the time.

“It was far too big to be an otter - but then we caught on what it was.”

From the Latin for fin-foot, pinnipeds, commonly called seals, are widespread semi-aquatic marine mammals.

They spend most of their lives in the water, but come ashore to mate, give birth, molt or escape from predators.

They feed largely on fish and marine invertebrates.

Most of the existing 33 species prefer the colder waters of the Northern and Southern Hemispheres, hence the appeal of the Lagan perhaps.

Whatever the river’s attraction, Lisburn’s very own seal seems at home in local waters, and far from camera shy.

Its appearance is guaranteed to have any and all observant passersby lining it up in the most readily available lens.