Police searching for wallaby

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Police in Lancashire are looking for a mystery marsupial after people reported seeing a kangaroo or wallaby near Garstang.

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

Lancashire Police’s PC Dave Kerfoot said he had initially been sceptical but admitted that after seeing a photo of the animal he may have been “overly suspicious”.

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

PC Kerfoot said: ‘We have been receiving reports of a kangaroo being on the loose in Winmarleigh – at first, I suspected that it was just residents in Winmarleigh wanting a Winmarleigh Wallaby to rival the Pilling Panther.

“But when the photographic evidence came through we couldn’t really dispute that there was a wallaby, or a kangaroo, in the road.

“In fact the photo would suggest I have been overly suspicious.

“As far as we know it’s still out and about, it’s certainly an interesting one.”

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.

The weekend operation saw officers stop and check 130 vehicles and arrest one driver on suspicion of drinking and driving.

Four further drivers were reported for having no insurance, one was issued with a fine for having no MOT and one was reported for possession of cannabis.