The National Trust of Scotland have issued advice on the safe viewing of seals in their natural environment.

Seal colonies can regularly be seen at the Eileans in Millport, Seamill, Portencross and Skelmorlie.

A National Trust spokesperson said: "Autumn is a key season for seals. Food is in plentiful supply, the water is – for the seals at least – a little warmer, and the seals are putting on bulk and storing their energy for the hard months ahead.

"It’s vital that seal spotters always take care to follow the Marine Wildlife Watching Code, which urges you to be aware, take responsibility for your actions, and have respect for wildlife, the environment and others. The smallest of intrusions – the bark of a dog or the noise of a drone – can have fatal consequences for young pups.

"I’d always urge caution when seal-watching. Adult seals come ashore to rest, to raise their young and occasionally to get away from predators."

For more details about the Marine Wildlife Watching Code, go to