- Tarmo Tolvanen rescued the animal which was on Lake Saimaa in Finland
- Saimaa ringed seal had been stuck on the bank and needed to go in water
- Low snowfall means seals cannot shelter in snow caves on land as usual
This is the touching moment a fisherman used a chainsaw to cut through a frozen lake in a bid to save a distressed seal which was waiting patiently nearby.
Tarmo Tolvanen made the decision to try and rescue the animal after discovering it on the icy surface of Lake Saimaa in Finland.
The Saimaa ringed seal, which is the world’s most endangered seal, had been stuck on the bank of the lake for days and appeared to quickly realise what the fisherman was doing.
A fisherman saved one of the world’s most endangered seals by cutting through the frozen lake it was stranded on with a chainsaw
Footage shows Mr Tolvanen carefully walking over the ice while wearing orange high-visibility overalls and a mask.
He uses the chainsaw to cut a square in the ice as the seal begins to shuffle across the frozen surface.
As Mr Tolvanen steps back, the seal gets closer appearing to know that it might be able to get back into the water.
The clip shows the fisherman using the tip of the chainsaw to poke the lump of ice into the water so the seal can get in.
Tarmo Tolvanen made the decision to try and rescue the animal after discovering it on the icy surface of Lake Saimaa in Finland – and the seal quickly seemed to realise what he was doing
The Saimaa ringed seal, which is an endangered species, had been stuck on the bank of the lake for days and quickly shuffled over to the hole
The seal cautiously put its nose into the freezing water before finally taking the plunge around two minutes after the man started sawing
The two-minute video ends with the seal cautiously putting its nose into the water before finally taking the plunge.
There are only 310 Saimaa ringed seals left in the world, according to experts.
The seals live in sheltered snow caves as they produce pups between February and May, but still need access to the water where they usually spend between 60 and 80 per cent of their time.
This year, snowfall has been particularly low causing the seals to spend an increasing amount of time in the water.