The things you find in the ocean can be downright bizarre. From giant squid to whales, and every sea creature in between. But what you would never expect to see is an elephant! So when the Navy saw this land animal struggling off the coast of Sri Lanka, they were shocked.

During a routine patrol off the northern coast of Kokkilai, Naval troops spotted what appeared to be a giant sea monster. They quickly realized it was an elephant! But how on earth does an elephant get 10 miles away from land?

Navy rescue

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Chances are the female giant, later named Alliya Plodder, was trying to swim across a lagoon when the current brought her out to sea. Asian elephants are generally good swimmers. It is not entirely unusual to see them going for a dip in the ocean. However, she was clearly struggling.

Navy rescue

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Good swimmer or not, the strong currents can be a danger to both humans and land born animals. Thankfully the Navy saw her just in time. They immediately deployed Naval divers and wildlife officials on a rescue operation to save her. It took 12 hours to bring Alliya back to dry land where she was evaluated.

Navy rescue

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Watch this remarkable video footage of the rescue operation below!