Somewhere on Lake Saimaa in southeastern Finland, a roly-poly, healthy-looking seal sprawls out on a rock by the shore. At times the seal scratches its neck with its front paw or rolls from one side to the other. But mostly it just basks on the rock. Sometimes it is joined by another seal, which does what its companion is doing – not much of anything.
This spectacle of Saimaa ringed seals (their Finnish name is saimaannorppa) hooked people in May 2016 when WWF started streaming it via webcam as Norppalive. Returning in 2017, it consists of a wildlife camera broadcasting real-time video from a rock popular among the seals. The Saimaa ringed seals attracted enormous attention and put viewers in good spirits. Norppalive received over two million views during a one-month period.
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