Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 17 September 2014

Wallaby cornered on tennis court

A wallaby on the loose in north London has been caught

A wallaby repeatedly spotted on the loose in north London has been caught.

The RSPCA were called to York Rise, near Kentish Town, in north London, where a 'large wild animal was causing chaos'.

Inspector Leigh Summers had been expecting to find a large rabbit when he was called out at about 7.30am on October 31.

Instead he found a crowd gathered round a tennis court where they had managed to corral one of the two wallabies thought to have been living in Highgate Woods.

It is thought the animals may have been dumped by their owner or were escaped pets.

Leigh said: "I had been told to handle the wallaby by grasping its tail and hold it as high as I could off the ground and as far away from me as possible to stop it finding any purchase for its legs.

"In fact, when I did grasp it the animal just hung there, relaxed, very much like a cat does when it is scruffed by its mother so I knew it was used to being handled like this."

The wallaby was in a highly populated area where it was in danger of harming itself or road users by causing a hazard.

It is now being housed in specialist temporary boarding facilities until a permanent home can be found for it.

Populations of red-necked wallabies became established in the wild in Britain back in the 1940s. However, the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 prohibits the release of red-necked wallabies as they are a non-native species.

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