A "petrified" badger was found hanging by its teeth from a harbour ladder in Fraserburgh.
The badger was found in a "petrified" condition
The Scottish SPCA has now launched an inquiry into the incident to try and discover how the badger got there.
Experts do not believe it would have wandered through the town and harbour area on its own and suspect foul play.
Scottish SPCA inspector John Carle said: "It was petrified and clinging onto the rung. However it should make a full recovery."
The badger is now being treated by vets and was said to be making good progress after its weekend ordeal.
Inspector Carle told BBC Scotland: "We are struggling to find out the answer why it would have gone there of its own accord.
"We want to find the answer and police are checking CCTV footage.
"Someone may have come across it in a weakened state, possibly having been hit by a car, or some illegal activity.
"It was petrified and clinging onto the rung.
"However it's in good condition now it's had a good rest, all the signs are pointing to that it should make a full recovery."
Anyone found guilty of crimes against badgers can face a fine of thousands of pounds and a prison sentence.