'Exhausted' Seal Rescued After Appearing Outside Lawyer's Office

A seal that was found alone outside a lawyer's office in a town center in the U.K. has been rescued by wildlife rescue volunteers in the area.

Humberside Police, who operate in the town of Grimsby, were called to the town center in the early hours of Thursday morning after they received reports that a seal had been spotted there. The seal was seen outside a lawyer's office, The Grimsby Telegraph reported.

Images posted to Twitter by the police and to Facebook by the animal charity who aided them showed the small seal struggling over roads and among cars before it was picked up by volunteers. The animal was seemingly a gray seal.

The police tweeted that their monitoring of the seal prior to the arrival of wildlife rescue volunteers had been "one of our slower pursuits."

Eventually, the Cleethorpes Wildlife Rescue charity rescued the seal. The charity said they cared for the animal before taking it to a nearby sanctuary.

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A spokesperson for the charity told Newsweek: "It's a new one for our rescue for a seal to be so far away from the beach, they do use rivers and streams but it must have been tough as the River Freshney has many obstacles including water turbines!"

They added: "When we arrived the seal was still exhausted but still put up a good fight to protect itself when we got him, this is why it's so important to get help from a rescue rather than the public trying to move him."

The appearance of a seal on the streets of a British town is not a unique occurrence. On December 29, the Marine and Wildlife Rescue charity said they had rescued a seal from the roads of the town of Great Yarmouth, which is located on the shores of the North Sea, south of Grimsby.

Grimsby itself sits at the mouth of the River Humber close to the North Sea coast in Britain, which is home to around 130,000 of the animals. That figure represents 40 per cent of the world's population of grey seals and 95 per cent of those found in Europe, according to UK-based group The Wildlife Trusts.

An update posted by the Cleethorpes Wildlife Rescue to Facebook showed an image of the seal in its new environment at the wildlife sanctuary.

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The age of the seal was not specified but it appeared to be a small specimen, with adult gray seals growing up to eight feet in length and weighing over 600 pounds at times.

Once highly prized for their meat and skins, gray seals were hunted to near extinction in Europe between the 16th and 19th centuries, with their numbers falling critically low before state intervention in the U.K. and elsewhere in the 1900s designated them as a protected species.

Seal rescued from British town
The seal rescued by Cleethorpes Wildlife Rescue from the streets of Grimsby. The charity said that the seal was "exhausted" when they found it and that its appearance in the town center was a "mystery". Cleethorpes Wildlife Rescue/Facebook