Runaway emu ruffles feathers in Michigan village

SHEPHERD, Mich. — A big bird on the loose in a Michigan village was not a practical joke.

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The Shepherd Police Department received a call on Tuesday about “an escaped feathered animal” that was later described as an emu or ostrich, the Huron Daily Tribune reported. And when officers arrived, Healy-Mu was standing there, police said in a Facebook post.

”You think you are the punch line in a practical joke played by someone,” Shepherd police said in the post. “Then you go to the area of the “escaped feathered animal” and you see a big bird standing there.

“Do you rope it, professional rodeo-style? Do you jump on its back like a professional wrestler? Do you just drive away and pretend you didn’t see it?”

Officers decided it was more prudent to simply follow the bird, the Daily Tribune reported. The bird was eventually caught by its owners in the northeast section of the village. The owners had been looking for the emu since Tuesday.

The call was much-needed comic relief, Shepherd police Chief Luke Sawyer told the newspaper.

“We just came off three calls resulting in death in seven days,” Sawyer said. “So chasing a bird was a needed laugh.”

Healy-Mu is moving to a new home in Reed City, the police department said, “where she hopes to find her Prince Charming.”