A runaway seal has found itself mixing with the wrong herd after he was spotted in a cow paddock 14km from the ocean.
Farmers were left scratching their heads after they found the New Zealand fur seal flippering its way down the Bega paddock in south-east New South Wales, from the banks of Jellat Jellat Creek.
In dramatic scenes, a team of three National Parks and Wildlife service officers and three council rangers rescued the seal and towed it to safety, reports Bega District.
Jellat Jellat's Corrie Shepherd mistook the seal for a cow when he saw it clambering down the paddock on Tuesday morning.
"I thought that's a strange looking cow,"
National parks officer Grant Brewer said they had no option but to capture the seal and move it from harm's way, reports
"We thought it wasn't a good option to try herd it back into the creek so we thought we'd go to plan B, and catch it," Brewer said.
Images show the rescue team using a seal net which slings the animal to keep it from using its flippers, before hauling it onto the trailer and driving it 14 kilometres to Bega River.
"It's just gone up the river looking for food and I think it's gotten disorientated. It just looked like it was lost so we put it back where it should be."
They said they notified police because of the unusual passenger they had hitching a ride on the back of the trailer.