The 600-pound sea lion in a forest road in Washington state, US. Cowlitz County Sheriff's Office/Facebook
A wayward sea lion weighing approximately 600 pounds was found wandering along a forest path, far from any source of water, before being captured and successfully relocated to a river.
On Feb.23, Cowlitz County Sheriff's Deputies responded to a peculiar incident in the area of Garlock Rd, outside of Castle Rock, Washington — a straying sea lion.
It is believed the sea lion reached the area after travelling up Delameter Creek from the Cowlitz River, before making its way inland.
Officials received a call alerting them to the presence of a sea lion on a road in Washington state, which was a ”significant distance from water,” according to a Facebook post by the Cowlitz County Sherriff’s Office.
Deputies, Humane Society and Cowlitz County Public Works staff were on scene for several hours until the Department of Fish and Wildlife was able to respond with a trailer and staff to capture and relocate the sea lion.
A string of pictures posted on the Cowlitz County Sherriff’s Office’s Facebook page shows authorities tackling the sea lion, coaxing the animal into a trailer.
A YouTube video about the dramatic event was also posted by the Sherriff’s Office.
After capturing the sea lion, it was transported back to the Columbia River.
According to wildlife officials, the sea lion was released back into the wild successfully, swimming off without incident.
Becky Bennett, who works for the WDFW, told CNN: “While it isn’t uncommon for sea lions to be in the Cowlitz River this time of year with all the smelt, it was quickly determined this Stellar sea lion, which are native to Washington, had taken several wrong turns.”
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