Some seals stranded in Newfoundland town have been removed, officials say

A seal is shown on a road in Roddickton N.L. in a handout

Yet the sight of seals crawling down the streets of the Great Northern Peninsula town is most unusual and has left some locals concerned.

Fitzgerald says it's not uncommon to see a handful of the whiskered mammals in her town, which is perched on an inlet at the edge of the frigid North Atlantic.

They are asking residents to contact their officer or Crime Stoppers (1-800-222-8477) if they see a seal on a roadway or are aware of people disturbing seals.

The seals appear to have become trapped and are unable to return to sea due to ice freezing over, according to resident Brendon Fitzpatrick.

Fitzgerald said the group of about 40 harp seals is becoming hungry, exhausted and are crying out, suggesting they may be too disoriented to find their way back to the ocean.

Roddickton-Bide Arm, on the island of Newfoundland, calls itself the "Moose Capital of the World". Two of the seals have been killed by a auto and the rest may starve if they are not returned to the ocean in time.

"People chase them. People are there every day on snowmobiles stopping and looking at them, and the animals, they won't move from you", he said in an interview Monday.

"There's not enough food in that little water supply", she said.

The disoriented seals, Stenson said, just keep on keeping on, hoping for the best.

The Roddickton-Bide Arm town council raised the issue at a regular municipal meeting Tuesday night, and resolved to ask the Department of Fisheries and Ocean to intervene.

She says that for the time being, the animals have been surviving on fish they catch in the town's streams.

"Seals are wild animals that can be unpredictable, and may become aggressive in order to protect themselves".

'There are seals on the road, there are seals in people's driveways, the backyards, the parking lots, the doorways, the businesses'.

Harp seals migrate south in groups at this time of year, Garry Stenson, head of the Department of Fisheries and Resources' marine mammals section, told The St. John's Morning Show. "Nobody wants to see any animal suffer".



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