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Seal’s wild city excursion

UPI – A young seal was returned to the ocean after wandering through a New Zealand city and KFC restaurant parking lot.

Landscaper Jonny Wimpress said he was working near the the establishment in the Papakura area of Auckland when he spotted something in the parking lot. “We thought there was a wet dog running past and turned around, it was a fully grown seal,” Wimpress told 1News.

Wimpress said he watched as police pursued the seal.

“It ran across the main highway and then into some residential houses. It was just causing chaos in people’s gardens. A lot of people came out from their houses to look at it,” he said.

The seal was wrangled by police and Department of Conservation personnel.

“The seal has possibly come into the Papakura area from the Pahurehure inlet. Seals are exploratory by nature, and often make their way into urban areas,” said operations manager for the Department of Conservation Helen Rowlands.

Biodiversity ranger for the department Shelley Ogle said the seal was given a lift to the coast.

“We drove the seal over to Muriwai Beach and worked with Auckland Council over there and once we opened the cage, it actually took off straight into the ocean, which is the best outcome we could’ve hoped for,” Ogle told Radio New Zealand.