New Home and Companions for
Lonely One-Eyed Seal 'Babyface'
A 32-year-old one-eyed common seal called Babyface can look forward to some female company again…after his long term partner Jasmine died earlier this year.

A favourite with Colchester Zoo visitors for 26 years, Babyface is to spend his twilight years with younger females Luna and Sija at the National Seal Sanctuary in Cornwall.

Sanctuary bosses decided to step in with an offer to re-home him when they heard of Babyface's sad loss.
Picture Babyface at Colchester Zoo
Picture Babyface at Colchester Zoo "Babyface has been a big favourite with both our animal care team and our visitors for a very long time and sired many pups," said Colchester Zoo curator Clive Barwick.

"We were of course very saddened when Jasmine, a female seal and long term companion of Babyface, died following surgery and although we'll be very sorry to see him leave, we're thrilled that Babyface is to enjoy a bit of company again at his new home."
Luna and Sija (photo right) arrived at the National Seal Sanctuary in 2007.

Luna had been stranded on the Danish coast a couple of times and was taken into care when her rescuers realised she was totally blind.

She is 16 years old, but Sija - who was born at the Sea Life centre in Blankenberge, Belgium, is only six. Sija had to be hand-reared by her keepers after her mother died.
Picture: Luna and Sija
Babyface will be collected by the Seal Sanctuary's senior animal care assistant Clare McGowan and colleague Rachael Vine on Thursday 16th September 2010. He will be driven straight back to Gweek and will join his two new companions Luna and Sija that same evening.

"We will stay with them until after dark just to make sure there are no problems, but we're sure they all become firm friends very quickly," said Clare.

Photocall

Babyface's emotional departure from Colchester could provide a good picture opportunity.

Time: 9.30am
Date: Thursday 16th September 2010
Venue: Colchester Zoo, Maldon Road, Stanway.

Alternately the National Seal Sanctuary would be happy to welcome any media wishing to see how the three seals have taken to each other...

Time: 9.30am
Date: Friday 17th September 2010
Venue: National Seal Sanctuary, Gweek, Cornwall
Press release issued by: The National Seal Sanctuary
For more information, please contact Sarah Vine or Eileen Keeling on 0871 423 2110
Date: 6th September 2010

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