Ethel the runaway emu is found! Errant bird who has been at large for a week now has a new home after Mail’s rescue mission
- Ethel the emu has been taken to safety after rescue operation by the Mail
- The 6ft flightless bird has been evading capture for a week in Yorkshire
- Strawberries lured Ethel into a horsebox and she was taken to a new home
She’s caused quite a flap roaming wild and free around the country lanes of Yorkshire.
But Ethel the runaway emu has finally found a dream new home – thanks to the Mail.
The 6ft flightless fugitive defied attempts by members of the public, police and the RSPCA to capture her as she wandered around the parks, gardens and fields in the Doncaster area.
Ethel the runaway emu has been on the loose for a week, roaming the country lanes of Yorkshire
Strawberry fields forever: Ethel is lured into Kelly Brough’s horsebox with punnets of strawberries
Concerns were growing for her wellbeing, having been on the run for almost a week and then spotted out and about dangerously close to the A1 motorway.
But a rescue operation organised by the Mail and aided by local animal lovers has provided Ethel with a new beginning.
The RSPCA approved the operation to rehome Ethel after establishing last Friday that the bird had no known owner.
She hit the headlines a week ago when details of her sightings were revealed, before a tricky bid to capture her.
It took several days and numerous punnets of strawberries to eventually lure Ethel into a horsebox and take her to safety.
Horse-lover Kelly Brough, 43, responded to appeals for a trailer on social media and yesterday succeeded where the RSPCA experts had failed.
After parking the trailer in the field, she coaxed Ethel inside with the fruit.
The 6ft flightless bird stood calmly for the journey – then leapt out into her new home
Ethel’s rescuer Kelly Brough, 43, responded to appeals for a trailer on social media and succeeded where the RSPCA experts had failed
‘Emus have a nasty kick on them and I’ve got a lovely bruise to show for my efforts but I managed it,’ she said.
As soon as Ethel was inside the trailer her daughter Jessica, 20, quickly shut the door.
‘We all just wanted her to go to where she would be fed and watered correctly. I think she was hungry and stressed,’ said Mrs Brough.
The Mail liaised with the RSPCA over the rescue operation. Their team, who were due to have a go at capturing the emu later in the day, were ‘very happy’ she was safe and well.
Ethel leaps out of the horsebox on her arrival at her new home and scampers off merrily
Nest friends: Ethel meets the three rheas – a distant relation to the emu and ostrich – as well as the alpacas in her new surroundings
Ethel was driven a short distance to the home of Jonathan Lister, 44, his wife Nickie, 40, and their two teenage children.
The family own three rheas – a distant relation to the emu and ostrich – as well as five alpacas.
Minutes after leaping out of the horsebox, the emu was making new friends.
Mr Lister said: ‘I was happy to help out as I didn’t want her to be involved in an accident.
‘She was pacing around at first but once she settles down she will be fine.’
Before long Ethel was running around the family’s large garden with the other animals.
‘It’s as if they have been together for ever,’ said Mr Lister.
An RSPCA spokesman said: ‘After establishing there is no known owner, she has now gone to a new home where we hope she will be really happy.’
Ethel the Emu settles into her new home with owners Jonathan Lister, 44, his wife Nickie, 40, and their two teenage children