Thursday, September 24, 2009
Seal Of Approval
Harbor seals are common in Maine. I saw this one on our last boating day. It was in the New Meadows River, which isn't a river at all. The New Meadows is a tidal tributary. I have no idea why it was named as a river. There is seaweed all the way to the northern most reaches, seals, horseshoe crabs and jelly fish, to name but a few of the ocean dwellers. So, no one would ever have confused it with a river. For about eighteen years I lived on the northern end, so I would know. I did see a beaver in the water there one spring. I would not have thought I'd ever see a beaver in salt water, but I did. It was playing with a cat on the bank. The beaver had a bunch of sticks in the water from which it had stripped the bark. The bare wood was pale in the dark water and the beaver was flipping it around as it worked off the bark. The cat seemed to think it had tied into the biggest rodent it had ever seen. Several times, it crept to the water's edge and batted at the beaver, then jumped back. The game ended when the beaver circled around in the water so that its tail was toward the cat, which was hunkered down in the mud as if about to pounce. The beaver slapped its tail on the water and doused the cat which took off, humiliated, no doubt. I've never seen a cat try to play with a seal. I'm waiting. I haven't kept count, but it seems to me I've seen more seals this year than ever before. I saw a Gray seal in our cove two days ago, which is highly unusual. They come from up north and aren't usually around here, certainly not in our warm cove. Harbor seals are still seen easily at the mouth of the Kennebec at Popham and generally, they are all but gone at this time of year. This seal has wiskers any cat would admire.