A FOUR foot bird reported ‘missing from home’ was found wandering round a Waterfoot warehouse.
A Rhea was discovered by workers at Buckhurst Plant Hire on Warth Lane as they arrived to start their shifts at 7am on Thursday.
The long-legged creature, a South American flightless bird, is thought to have entered the company’s yard overnight.
Workshop manager Eddie Wilde said: “I came in to start my shift at 7am and one of the lads warned me to be careful going into the yard.
“As I walked in I couldn’t believe my eyes. There was a four foot bird we originally thought was an Emu just wandering about.
“it was really calm and happy to be wandering it about. It even took food off some of the workers.”
After spotting the bird in the workshop, Eddie and his team called the police.
He said: “We called the police as we weren’t too sure who else to ring. We thought they would be able to connect us with the RSPCA or RSPCB.
“They really surprised me when they said they had received reports that two Rheas were missing from home and that they would try and contact their owner.
“The bird was just really relaxed and calm. It obviously felt at home as it just did whatever it wanted to do.
“When one of the office girls arrived she had no idea about what we have found. When she spotted it and parked up it just went and stood by her car. Despite sounding the horn it just wouldn’t shift blocking her in the car.”
The owner of the Rhea, Harry Barnes runs a farm off Bacup Road in Waterfoot.
He arrived at the plant hire company with his van and trial shortly after 4pm and once he opened the back door the Rhea just jumped in.
Eddie added: “It really made our day, all the staff thought it was great. This was definitely not something you expect to see at work.”