seal

Days After Release Off Block Island, Shoebert the Seal Is Back on North Shore

Shoebert, who became popular hanging out last month at Shoe Pond in Beverly, Massachusetts, was released back into the ocean near Block Island by Mystic Aquarium; he was tracked a short time later near his former home on the North Shore

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A beloved seal who made his home at Shoe Pond in Beverly, Massachusetts, is back on the North Shore just days after he was released into the ocean south of mainland New England.

Shoebert was first spotted swimming in Beverly last month. Despite being a little out of place, he seemed healthy. After rescuers worked to get him out of the pond, he was brought to Connecticut's Mystic Aquarium, where he received a full health assessment.

Last Tuesday, workers released Shoebert back into the ocean near Block Island, fitting him with a satellite tracker to help researchers learn more about seal ranges and habits.

Shoebert received a clean bill of health before he was released back into the ocean on Block Island

Sarah Callan, manager of the Mystic Aquarium Animal Rescue Program, told NBC10 Boston Thursday that Shoebert had been tracked on the North Shore.

"Shoebert initially spent some time exploring the coast of Block Island and then swam towards the mainland of Rhode Island where he was tracked exploring inlets and bays along the shoreline," Callan wrote. "As many seals released are seen heading north, Shoebert appears to be travelling in the same direction. While we aren't entirely sure how seals navigate, they can certainly swim very far distances in a short period of time."

On Wednesday, Callan told the Boston Globe she does not expect him to stay in Beverly long this time.

"We're not overly surprised," she said, according to the Globe. "He seems to be staying closer to the shoreline, unlike other seals that might be further out [in the ocean]. But if he's not getting food, he'll be moving on north."

A seal that captured the attention of people in Beverly, Massachusetts, made an incredible journey overnight, wiggling his way towards the police station. The lovable mammal was later taken to Mystic Aquarium in Connecticut and will be released back in the open water.

Shoebert's short stay last week was his second visit to Mystic. In 2018, he was rescued by the International Fund for Animal Welfare as a pup. He was rehabilitated at Mystic, having suffered a serious facial wound and infection.

"Shobert's contributions expand far beyond the smiles he has brought everyone throughout his journey," Callan said last week. "Obtaining data on Shoebert's health and movements since his initial admit for rehabilitation in 2018 is a unique opportunity that is important in a world where ocean dynamics are changing at an alarming rate. Shobert's contributions to science and research will help us understand more about the gray seal species as a whole and the role they play in the ecosystem."

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