Four people have been arrested for stoning a seal at Monwabisi beach on Sunday 08 January. The incident happened in Monwabisi beach near Khayelitsha.
It is alleged that they have been sent by a sangoma who promised them R3000. The Cape of Good Hope SPCA spokesman Chief Inspector Jaco Pietersen said they were called to the scene after reports of men stoning a seal.
“The Cape of Good Hope SPCA was alerted to the fact that a group of men were observed trying to kill an adult Cape fur seal by throwing big rocks at it whilst it was trapped and unable to escape on Monwabisi Beach at around 6pm on Sunday evening,” said Pietersen.
City of Cape Town Law Enforcement officer reacted swiftly and stopped the men from attacking the seal.
The officer detained the man until SPCA Inspector Werner Taljaard and trainee inspector Eugene Links arrived and rescued the seal.
They took the severely injured seal to a private 24-hour veterinary practice where it was euthanised due to the heavy injuries. The veterinarian said the seal had suffered severe facial and skull fractures, was bleeding profusely from the mouth, had one of its eyes crushed. Most of its teeth had been completely broken off in its mouth.
“Seeing the broken condition this animal was in when it was carried off the beach made my blood run cold. Not in 37 years of working in wildlife welfare have I seen such a case of abject cruelty visited on a defenseless animal that was in all likelihood just minding its own business,” said SPCA Wildlife Officer Jon Friedman.
When the suspects were have been since arrested asked why they attacked the seal, they said said it was for money.
“According to one of the suspects who was questioned as to what their motive was in trying to kill the seal, he explained that he and a group of friends had been approached by a traditional healer who pointed out the seal to them and offered them R3000 (three thousand rand) to kill the seal,” said Pietersen.
The incident happens a week after a seal attacked two beachgoers at Clifton Beach on Tuesday 03 January.
The men were arrested for Animal Cruelty charges.