The River Thames supports a variety of marine mammals, including Harbour Seals, Grey Seals, Harbour Porpoises and the occasional Bottlenose Dolphin.
Grey Seals are the largest of the two seal species, reaching up to 2.5m. They are regularly spotted on the mudflats along the Thames Foreshore, basking in the shape of a banana to keep their head and flippers dry and warm.
They have a flat head and a long muzzle with parallel nostrils. They vary in colour from dark grey to creamy white, with white colouring on their bellies. Females may live for 35 years, while their male counterparts rarely exceed 25 years old.
120,000 Grey seals are estimated to live on British coasts, an impressive increase from only 500 in the early 20th century. To ensure we safely maintain their habitat, you can help by keeping foreshores and beaches clean and tidy.