Magnus, a Grey seal who lives at the National Seal Sanctuary at Gweek in Cornwall, this week celebrates his 40th birthday. Magnus is thought to be the world's oldest male grey seal in captivity.

Fifteen years ago the future looked bleak for Magnus and his home in Scotland.

The zoo he was housed in wanted to put Magnus to sleep as he was the only seal who lived there. Luckily a national paper got involved and a petition was started to save Magnus, and find him a new home.

In 1990 Magnus became a permanent resident at Gweek, and is a favourite with visitors and staff alike.

Magnus in his favourite spot

"Magnus is still in good health despite his age," said Tamara Cooper Animal Care Supervisor.

"He knows how to conserve his energy, and at feeding time becomes a grumpy old man if not fed fast enough, but he still has enough energy for splashing the Animal Care Team.

Magnus will be celebrating with a special 'fish' cake that the Animal Care Team have made from ingredients including sprat, herring and conger eel.

"Magnus loves his conger eel, and will be reluctant to share his cake with any of the other residents" added Tamara.

Issued by The National Seal Sanctuary

For more details, please contact Tamara Cooper or Rachael Vine on 01326 221361

Press Release date: 23rd January 2008

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