Escaped pelican mailed home - after being kept in dining room

An escapee on the loose in Stevenage was returned to captivity yesterday, after a three week adventure.

A great white pelican which spent a week on the main lake at Fairlands Valley Park after escaping from a Staffordshire zoo, was caught in Sawbridgeworth on Sunday.

It had continued its travels south from Stevenage on Wednesday afternoon – although not before stopping off in one shocked Stevenage woman’s garden.

The giant bird, with a wingspan of around nine feet and a sharp beak, was finally grabbed by one brave fisherman on Sunday, who took it home and shut it in his dining room before booking a courier to take it back to Blackbrook Zoo.

The bird arrived home in the back of a van on Monday where bird keepers quickly clipped its flight feathers to prevent a further break.

Zoo trustee Kevin Shannon who had tried to catch the affectionately named Little Sod at Fairlands, said the bird was underweight and has been put in quarantine while it is checked for any infections, before being returned to the 40-strong pelican population at the zoo.