The search for the Essex lion has been called off.
Officials in Great Britain spent the last 24-hours searching for a lion that was spotted in a field near St Osyth. Helicopters, animal experts, and marksmen searched the area for the lion but didn’t find any traces of a big cat.
Today, the search for the Essex lion was called off.
A police spokesman told the Daily Mail:
‘We believe what was seen on Sunday evening was either a large domestic cat or a wildcat. Extensive searches have been carried out, areas examined and witnesses spoken to; yet nothing has been found to suggest that a lion was in the area.”
According to the Daily Mail, the search began after a group of people spotted a “lion” in a field in Essex. A blurry photo was snapped and officers went on a 24-hour lion hunt.
Denise Martin, who snapped the photo, said:
“I was looking out of the window and we saw smoke – it looked like there had been a bit of a bonfire. When you are in a caravan you panic about smoke… When the smoke cleared I could see this shape in the field, so I got the binoculars out. We had a look and it looked like a lion.”
Here’s a photo of the Essex lion.
Anthony Tropeano, zoological director of Colchester Zoo, told the BBC:
“The photograph shows an animal in a field, it is a sandy brown colour, but the photography is of such poor quality it’s not possible for us to say one way or the other what it definitely is.”
After the search for the lion began, the internet started to fill up with images of blurry cats. The police said in a statement:
“Several doctored photographs are in circulation through social networking sites and other media forums.”
Here is one of the doctored photos.
Do you think the Essex lion was real? Or was it really just a big cat?