March 25 (UPI) -- Animal rescuers in New Jersey said they rescued a 200-pound seal found stranded in a duck pond, but they don't know how the animal ended up in the situation.
The Marine Mammal Stranding Center said a rescue team was dispatched Monday to a duck pond in Shrewsbury where an adult male harp seal had been spotted stranded in the muddy water.
The center said the seal had been struggling for several days and had been eating leaves and mud due to the lack of a suitable food source.
Rescuers said they do not know how the seal ended up in the pond, but they offered some ideas in a Facebook post.
"Did he wander up the freshwater tributary searching for fish, and climb up the steep embankment to rest? Was he swimming in the area during the recent lunar high tide and get swept through a culvert?" the post asked.
A rescuer climbed into the muddy water Monday and snared the 200-pound animal in a specially designed net. Rescuers then hauled the seal to shore.
The center said the seal is now receiving veterinary care and is recovering in a rehabilitation pool.