Doctors at Auckland City Hospital wouldn't go into how an eel the size of "a decent sprig of asparagus" became lodged up the backside of an unnamed patient, but said it was successfully extracted, and the man was discharged.

This is believed to be a first at the hospital, which, according to a New Zealand Herald source, has seen its fair share of "people with strange objects that have got stuck where they shouldn't be."

A spokesman for the hospital would only confirm that an adult male was admitted "with an eel inside him," but refused to comment further, citing doctor-patient confidentiality.

The Herald concluded its reporting with the following bit of trivia on the eel population, which, given the circumstances, is beyond priceless:

Eels migrate up streams as elvers to find suitable adult habitat. After many years they migrate to the Pacific Ocean to breed and die. Eels are secretive, nocturnal and prefer habitats with plenty of cover. They hunt by smell rather than sight.

[photo via QuickMeme]