SEA creatures at Weymouth Sea Life Adventure Park are gripped with World Cup fever as they take part in a special football sweepstake.
With the first few matches played in Brazil – including England’s first game which saw the Three Lions lose 2-1 to Italy – the park’s resident creatures have all been given a team to support in the tournament.
Visitors can see which animal is supporting which team at the park, and are then invited to make a donation to the Sea Life Marine Conservation Trust and predict which team and animal will win the competition.
Staff will install score boards by enclosures and keep everyone up to date on its Facebook page on what animals are still in the competition.
After the World Cup finishes on July 13, the park’s organisers will then pick 32 tickets from those who guessed the correct team and they will be rewarded with a VIP feeding experience.
Marketing coordinator Laura Culshaw said: “A large number of creatures wanted to support England in the World Cup, but the common harbour seals were the obvious choice, and will be flying the flag right the way through to victory. Although the creatures will be supporting their home countries, they’ll be kept firmly away from their rival teams in case they take their competition as far as a bite or nibble.”
The piranha, representing host nation Brazil, felt as confident as its football team after they beat Croatia, but the common seals representing England may be feeling slightly deflated today. They may be in a more buoyant mood when England take on Uruguay on Thursday.
Miss Culshaw said they were inspired by Paul, the ‘psychic’ octopus born at Weymouth Sea Life Park who shot to fame when it correctly predicted the results of the 2010 World Cup.
She added: “We have just launched our charity the Sealife Marine Conservation Trust and the aim is to raise money for that.
“There was a lot of attention at the last world cup for Paul the octopus and he was actually born in Weymouth, but we wanted to do something that would include all of the animals.
“The otters have got some footballs as well so visitors might see them having a kickabout.”