What are the odds of an adorable and roly-poly gray seal 'turning himself in' after eluding capture for days? Well, this is exactly what transpired on Friday in Beverly, Massachusetts. "Shoebert", a four-year-old gray sea who became a celebrity after wandering into a pond in the city, 'surrendered' to the local police in the early hours of Friday.
According to a statement by the Beverly Police Department on social media, the animal who had evaded capture earlier in the week made his way from the pond to the police station in the wee hours of Friday. "Shoebert made his way out of the pond and traveled through the Cummings Center parking lot and came to the side door of the police station for some help," the post said.
'Surrendering' to the Police
The feisty seal became a local celebrity after he appeared in Shoe Pond, a water body in the city of Beverly, Massachusetts, earlier this month. It is believed that the pinniped reached the pond from the sea after travelling through a river and the drainage network. He was eventually christened "Shoebert" after the pond he emerged from.
On Thursday, attempts were made by wildlife experts and firefighters to catch and relocate the seal using boats and giant nets. After being unable to capture the resilient animal, the authorities called off their efforts. However, Shoebert's 'defiance' came to an end on Friday.
According to the post, the seal left the pond, hobbled his way through the community centre's parking lot, and showed up outside the police station's side door at 2:30 am on Friday. The police, along with other experts and authorities, was able to corral the animal.
"Within a short period of time the entire midnight shift, Beverly Animal Contol, Members of NOAA, International Fund for Animal Welfare, and the Beverly Fire Department all came to the rescue of Shoebert," the statement explained.
Time to Go Home
Through their combined efforts, the team was able to get Shoebert into a special wildlife carrier "without incident". Talking about the seal's condition, the post added: "Shoebert appeared to be in good health and was a little sassy in the early morning hours."
Following this, Shoebert was taken to the Mystic Aquarium in Mystic, Connecticut. He will be examined by the facility's staff and provided medical care if required before being released into the wild.
Bidding the spirited guest farewell, the post concluded: "Thank you Shoebert for having faith in the BPD, you will be deeply missed by your friends here. Over the past week you brought a lot of joy and happiness to our city. Feel free to come back and visit anytime!"