Runaway rhea causes havoc for drivers as it sprints through UK village in funny video

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Footage has captured the moment a runaway rhea caused havoc for drivers as it sprinted through a sleepy UK village.

The large flightless South American bird escaped from a farm. The rhea, which can reach speeds of up to 40mph, was spotted by window cleaner Robert Jay when it leapt in front of his car on Main Street.

Robert, 46, and his wife Melanie, 43, were on their way home from doing a food shop when they filmed the bird. Dad-of-three Robert said: “At first I thought it was an ostrich. It jumped out in front of us from our customer's garden, luckily we were going slow enough. We were coming back from shopping and thankfully we were going slow enough.

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"It was a crazy scene, something you don’t expect to see it. It was like something you’d see at a wildlife park. It was on someone's front lawn taking a rest and then it jumped out in front of us. It obviously wanted a look around the village.

Runaway Rhea causes havoc in UK village.Runaway Rhea causes havoc in UK village.
Runaway Rhea causes havoc in UK village. | SWNS

"You could see people taking pictures and videos. We followed it at a safe distance for a few minutes and the it just veered off into someone else’s garden.”

The bird was first spotted around 2pm on April 28 running along Main Street in Repton, Derbyshire. Robert, who has one grandchild, added: "We followed it for a good few minutes, it was running quite quick. We didn’t want to scare it.

“We’ve got lots of peacocks in the village but that is the biggest bird we’ve had. There are some farms around so we’re assuming it’s from one of those. “It was higher than the bonnet of my 4x4 Ford Kuga, it was quite big. It was quite shocking. It made our day."

The rhea was eventually captured and was reunited with its owner after being checked over by vets.

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