ORANGE COUNTY, N.C. — An escaped emu has been avoiding capture for weeks now, but continues to tantalize animal control officials in Orange County, North Carolina, with sudden public appearances -- before just as suddenly disappearing.
The large flightless bird’s latest antics involved a startling interaction with a car.
"He apparently jumped on the hood of a car and then ran away," Tenille Fox, with Orange County Animal Services told WTVD-TV.
No one seems to know who the bird belongs to, WTVD reported. It just appeared in a backyard in June, and then the hunt was on to find it.
Fox is asking anyone with information on the emu to get in touch with his agency. He’s hoping extra details about the 100-pound bird might help animal control officers capture it, but he’s also warning people not to try and catch it themselves.
"What we really need is for this emu to wander into an area that provides some sort of containment -- such as natural barriers, a pasture or some sort of fenced area," he told the news station.
“If the emu is in an area like that, an animal control team can try to block the animal off even more and hopefully corral the animal without causing further stress. We worry about causing more stress in this heat,” the officer said.
Emus are flightless birds that grow over 6 feet tall and weigh as much as 100 pounds, according to National Geographic. They have powerful legs and can run as fast as 30 mph.
Cox Media Group