National Trust Cymru will be closing the ‘Blue Lagoon’ in Abereiddy to visitors from September 25 through to November 5.

The move is intended to allow the grey seal population time and space to rest, feed and socialise on land, while also raising pups.

Recent years have seen increasing numbers of the grey seal population breeding in and around the lagoon.

Visitors will still be able to watch the seals from the coastal path and coasteering activity providers who have signed up to the National Trust’s Coasteering Agreement will still have access to the lagoon with groups of visitors who have booked in advance.

Mark Underhill, National Trust Cymru’s countryside manager in Pembrokeshire said: “There are two species of seal that can be found in Britain; the Common seal and the Grey seal. Only Grey seals occur regularly in Pembrokeshire, where they are present all year round.

“About half the world’s population of Grey Seal breed on our coastline and the total number in West Wales, mostly Pembrokeshire, is estimated to be about 5,000, with some 1,400 pups being born each year.

“The breeding season is vital for our seal colonies here in Pembrokeshire, and we ask that visitors do not access the Blue Lagoon and that they follow the guidelines laid out by the Seal Alliance and Pembrokeshire Marine Code when on the coastal path.”

The move comes after a seal pup was found dead in Castell Bach near New Quay last week.

It was the second such discovery after a pup died near Llangrannog after its mother was frightened away by visitors taking selfies.

Paul Renfro from the Pembrokeshire Coastal Forum said: “The Pembrokeshire Marine Code recommends remaining at least 50m away from the seals, though they can be disturbed at any distance so it’s important to be responsive to their behaviour.

“If a resting seal looks up or turns to looks at you then you are close enough at whatever distance you are at. 

"Seals can be particularly sensitive to disturbance after periods of stormy weather and during the breeding season so we recommend giving them extra space at these times.”

If you value The National's journalism, help grow our team of reporters by becoming a subscriber.