The story of Blitz & Chippie
I have posted about Cape Fur Seals before but this post is different and deals with a controversial character and his relationship with some seals. Seals are large animals with adult females weighing about 120 kg and males weighing between 200kg & 300kg. They possess large sharp teeth used for capturing and grasping their prey as well as for defence.
Blitz is a heavily tattooed, cantankerous, scary-looking character who is often to be found at a local harbour.
Over the years he has developed a relationship with the wild seals that frequent this harbour and he recognises each individual. One of them whom he has named “Chippie” responds to his commands and on his command, will leap about 3 metres out of the water onto the quayside where she allows Blitz to pat her.
Blitz’s favourite “party-trick” is to allow the Chippie to leap out of the water to take a piece of fish skin from his mouth. . .
I wouldn’t suggest that you try this at home. At least one youngster trying this at another harbour was very badly bitten. Blitz has come under a lot of fire for his actions with the Department of Marine & Coastal Management threatening him and laying charges against him for feeding and interfering with wild animals.
The fact is that every day scores fishing boats returning to harbour throw fish guts overboard, effectively feeding seals and sea birds and they are not criticised or fined for this behaviour. Similarly the shark-cage operators use fish heads to intentionally attract sharks. And all the while fishermen are shooting seals out at sea, so why persecute Blitz?
Personally I am amazed by the rapport that Blitz has with the seals and the relationship that he has developed with these wild animals.