Kayaker Steve Blight spots seal in Southampton Water

CLOSE ENCOUNTER: The seal which kept kayaker Steve Blight company during his early morning kayak on Southampton Water

STUNNED: Dad of two Steve Blight with his kayak

COMFORT ZONE: A wildlife expert said it is not uncommon for seals to show interest in objects in the water

First published in Sport
Last updated
Daily Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Political reporter

WHEN Steve Blight goes for his regular kayaking trip he normally has nothing but the elements for company.

But when he made his last trip up Southampton Water he made an unlikely friend when a playful seal decided to make his acquaintance.

Far from being scared of him it came up to the side of his kayak, chased around and stayed with him for 20 minutes as he took the photographs above.

Daily Echo:

Forty-eight-year-old Mr Blight, from Fawley had gone for his usual weekend morning kayak at 7.30am.

And he was 100 yards off shore from Marchwood Military Port when the friendly critter popped its head up.

Daily Echo:

The dad of two, a contractor at Cape Industrial Services, said: “It was really unexpected – I’ve seen them before but I’ve never seen them that far up Southampton Water and certainly not that close up.

“It popped its head up and I thought it would disappear but then it came closer to me.

Daily Echo:

“It was chasing me around in circles and being very playful, and came right up to the side of the kayak.

“I was stunned by it, it was absolutely amazing, the chance of a lifetime. I texted my daughters a picture of the seal, and they replied saying ‘awesome Dad, we want one’.”

Daily Echo:

Local marine experts say it is not that unusual for a seal to be so friendly.

Tim Ferrero, head of marine conservation at the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust (HIWWT), said: “I think a seal in the water is in its comfort zone so if they are curious about something they will just go and have a look.

“Kayakers are fairly quiet and serene so I think that was what led to this nice encounter.”

Comments (9)

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11:41am Thu 27 Mar 14

Brite Spark says...

That's a lovely story, good luck to the little fella.
That's a lovely story, good luck to the little fella. Brite Spark
  • Score: 22

12:01pm Thu 27 Mar 14

southy says...

Seals have been going as far up river (on the test) Green Bridge/Iron Bridge as long as I can remember, often see them in the deep hole infront of the Regency Bridge (single arch bridge)
Seals have been going as far up river (on the test) Green Bridge/Iron Bridge as long as I can remember, often see them in the deep hole infront of the Regency Bridge (single arch bridge) southy
  • Score: 12

12:36pm Thu 27 Mar 14

loonaloop says...

Seen them many times by the old canal (now Railway) stretch of the test on the old original Redbridge.
Seen them many times by the old canal (now Railway) stretch of the test on the old original Redbridge. loonaloop
  • Score: 7

1:22pm Thu 27 Mar 14

Brite Spark says...

Close Encounter of the Furred Kind.
Close Encounter of the Furred Kind. Brite Spark
  • Score: 8

7:33pm Thu 27 Mar 14

Zexagon says...

loonaloop wrote:
Seen them many times by the old canal (now Railway) stretch of the test on the old original Redbridge.
Whereabouts loop?
[quote][p][bold]loonaloop[/bold] wrote: Seen them many times by the old canal (now Railway) stretch of the test on the old original Redbridge.[/p][/quote]Whereabouts loop? Zexagon
  • Score: 4

7:56pm Thu 27 Mar 14

southy says...

Zexagon wrote:
loonaloop wrote:
Seen them many times by the old canal (now Railway) stretch of the test on the old original Redbridge.
Whereabouts loop?
from Gover road heading towards the new echo office, that is where the railway sits ontop of the old canal
[quote][p][bold]Zexagon[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]loonaloop[/bold] wrote: Seen them many times by the old canal (now Railway) stretch of the test on the old original Redbridge.[/p][/quote]Whereabouts loop?[/p][/quote]from Gover road heading towards the new echo office, that is where the railway sits ontop of the old canal southy
  • Score: 3

8:28pm Thu 27 Mar 14

Inform Al says...

How sweet, what do they taste like?
How sweet, what do they taste like? Inform Al
  • Score: -6

8:56am Fri 28 Mar 14

Lone Ranger. says...

I used to curse them whilst fishing off Dock Head ...... see a seal .... call it a day as the fish wiould have gone .. or been eaten by it
I used to curse them whilst fishing off Dock Head ...... see a seal .... call it a day as the fish wiould have gone .. or been eaten by it Lone Ranger.
  • Score: 1

9:50am Fri 28 Mar 14

forest hump says...

I saw Seal at Wembly "crazy"!
I saw Seal at Wembly "crazy"! forest hump
  • Score: -2

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