Thursday, 2 May 2013

Lancashire kangaroo or wallaby sighting investigated

Police in Lancashire have been looking for a mystery marsupial after people reported seeing one near Garstang. 

Officers heard about a kangaroo crossing a carriageway in Winmarleigh while they were running a rural crime operation in the area at the weekend. 

Lancashire Police's Dave Kerfoot said he had been sceptical but added that seeing a photo of the animal showed he may have been "overly suspicious". 

He said police were investigating where the animal was from and who owned it. 

Kangaroo or wallaby? 

· Kangaroos and wallabies are marsupials and are closely related, though adult kangaroos are larger than wallabies 
· They can be identified via their teeth, which are different as kangaroos mainly eat grass while wallabies mostly eat leaves 
· They are native to Australia and have been introduced in the UK in parks, zoos and farms 

Source: Australia Zoo 

He added that he had "suspected that it was residents wanting a Winmarleigh Wallaby to rival the Pilling Panther". 

The Pilling Panther refers to rumoured sightings of a wildcat which is said to stalk the area around near the village of Pilling, which lies to the west of Winmarleigh. 

A police spokesman said there were suggestions that the animal was not a kangaroo, but a wallaby, which may have escaped from a nearby farm. 

He added that the weekend operation had seen officers stop and check 130 vehicles and arrest one driver on suspicion of drinking and driving.

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