Harbour Seal Numbers in the Wadden Sea and on Helgoland in 2016

Trilateral Seal Expert Group (TSEG)

In 2016, aerial surveys for harbour seal counts of the entire Wadden Sea were coordinated as in previous years (started in 1975), according to the Seal Management Plan. The counts are synchronized to the degree possible between the three Wadden Sea countries Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands, in order to obtain a single estimate for the number of harbour seals and newborn pups in the entire Wadden Sea. Seals are counted when hauling out on land and counts are scheduled to be carried out when low tide occurs around midday. Due to unfavourable weather conditions, it was not possible to perform a complete survey of Lower Saxony/ Hamburg during the moult in 2016, rendering it impossible to provide an estimate of the annual population abundance.


Authors: Anders Galatius, Sophie Brasseur, Richard Czeck, Lasse Fast Jensen, Armin Jeß, Peter Körber, Ralf Pund, Ursula Siebert, Jonas Teilmann, Sascha Klöpper