ELLSWORTH — A seal pup made its way onto the Bayside Road on Friday morning.
“There’s a little brook across the street from where it was,” just past the Spindle Road, said Maine Marine Patrol Spc. Sean Dow, adding that he was told the waters were high after yesterday’s rain. “I’m assuming maybe it found its way up there.”
“He seemed happy,” said Marine Patrol Sgt. Troy Dow (who is no relation to the specialist). “He was responsive when you touched him or moved him.”
Ellsworth Police Officer Andrew Weatherbee “shooed it off the side,” said Spc. Dow.
The officers called Allied Whale, the marine mammal research lab at College of the Atlantic, a required part of protocol. That’s because under the Marine Mammal Protection Act, it is illegal to touch or move seals without proper permission. Allied Whale is the designated stranding response organization for the area and staff there gave Marine Patrol the OK to move and release this seal.
The men put gloves on and picked up the animal, which they said weighed between 20 and 25 pounds and was around 3 feet long, put him in a plastic tote and “sat him in the front seat of the truck,” said Sgt. Dow.
“They don’t have the elbows like a deer,” he said. “Once they’re in there they’re pretty secure.”
“It is strange to pick one up that far from shore,” said Sgt. Dow, although “it’s not as rare as you’d think.”
The officers let the seal go at the Trenton boat ramp.
“And he swam away,” said Spc. Dow.