A Hunstanton animal sanctuary and a sea tour operator have joined forces to rescue a stranded porpoise off the West Norfolk coast.
Staff from the resort’s Sea Life sanctuary were sent to Snettisham last Wednesday following reports that the animal was in difficulty.
And, after freeing her from the mud, she was placed on board the Wash Monster, an amphibious vessel which operates sea tours into the Wash, so she could be released further out to sea, giving her the best chance of survival.
Natalie Emmerson, from the Sea Life sanctuary, said: “It was very clear on arrival she was in a bad way, trapped in a shallow muddy pool with the tide out would have been incredibly stressful and it’s likely it wouldn’t have survived for long in these conditions.
“We suspect that she may have become trapped and disorientated in the muddy creeks, possibly while chasing food”.
“She’s very lucky to have not sustained any serious injuries while she was stranded.
“We decided the best course of action would be to transport her a short distance so she could be re-floated somewhere safe and be checked over by a local vet before being released.”
Though the porpoise headed back towards the sandbank for a time after being released, staff soon lost sight of her as she headed out to sea.
William Searle, director of Searles Sea Tours which operates the Wash Monster, said: “I was pleased that we were able to assist with the release.
“It was a tense moment watching her go. I’m happy to watch her return to the wild.”