A wild seal named Sammy has been delighting some beachgoers in the United Kingdom with his social antics. Luckily, one photographer caught him on camera doing what he does best: making human friends.
In early August, Will Badman drove to Weymouth Beach in Dorset, a town on the southwest of England, hoping to encounter the infamous seal after he learned of him on Facebook.
The adorable seal has been known to locals since the height of the United Kingdom quarantine, as Sammy took advantage of the deserted beaches to fish and rest. But as locals slowly returned to the shores, Sammy, who wasn’t a bit perturbed by their presence, continued to stick around and got friendly with them.
“[He] seems to love the cameras,” Badman observed, having caught not only the seal’s antics but a plethora of funny facial expressions on film.
In becoming a local “seal-ebrity,” Sammy has also attracted a group of volunteers who patrol the beach, wishing to safeguard his welfare. Badman used a telescopic lens while taking some incredible photos of Sammy to keep a respectful distance; likewise, Sammy’s champions advise people to remember that he’s a wild animal despite his social nature.
“[I]f you do see him,” Badman implored, “please respect that he is wild and will scratch and bite, as he did to two people this morning.” The people bitten, he continued, were taken to a hospital to have their wounds checked out.
“If Sammy is on the beach, please keep your distance and let him rest and warm up,” the photographer advised.
“[I]t’s something different to add to my profile,” Badman, who loves taking pictures of nature, landscape, and family events, said. “I have had great feedback from the photos.”