A seal has been spotted sunbathing by a freshwater lake after making its way 30 miles inland from the coast.
The aquatic mammal, normally found living by the seashore, was discovered “chilling” by the water’s edge at Peterborough Rowing Lake, in Cambridgeshire, England.
Nature lover Jen Cowley, 36, who took the photos of the adult common seal, said she was stunned to see it while walking with her family.
They then observed the calm animal for around 40 minutes – which seemed unbothered by swans and other birdlife – and decided to call it Bert.
She said: “We saw the seal from a distance. It was a shock to see it there by the rowing lake. It was just sitting there chilling.
“It must have come from the sea. It kept yawning – that’s why I got a photo with its mouth open. It wasn’t aggressive.
“The swans kept hissing at it, but then they just went away. It didn’t react to them. I imagine it’s just been eating the fish in the lake.”
Jen said she had reported the seal to a local sanctuary over her concerns that it had an injured eye.
But they said the animal looked “healthy and happy” while adding that it was important to keep her distance.
A spokesperson from the RSPCA said: “It is not unusual for seals to find their way into harbors or rivers and they have been known to travel inland quite some distance.
“Seals are strong, powerful wild animals and have a very nasty bite which can cause horrible wounds, which could become infected by the bacteria that live in a seal’s mouth.
“If you see a seal on land, please do not try to encourage them back into the water as seal pups may haul out to rest, or if they’re unwell.
“Feeding them should also be avoided as this may do more harm than good.
“If you are concerned about them, observe from a distance for at least 24 hours.”
Produced in association with SWNS Talker