When birdwatcher Ian Ellis headed out for a day of viewing his feathered friends, he never expected to see this.

Peering through his telescope, Ian spotted a group of cows acting quite strangely. They were digging intently through the mud — but exactly what they were digging up remained a mystery.

Curious, Ian walked over to the cows, and was shocked to see a baby seal buried in the mud — the pup had somehow wandered three miles from the ocean!

Ian did the right thing, and called on the Natureland seal sanctuary in Skegness, who brought the seal to their sanctuary and administered the medical attention she needed.

The seal — named “Celebration” in honor of Natureland’s 50th anniversary — made a full recovery, and was successfully released back into the sea.