A granddad who killed a giant rat may be investigated by the police for animal cruelty.
Brian Watson killed the 4ft rodent with a piece of wood in Castleside, Consett, County Durham.
He said that the creature was a giant rat but it is possible the animal may be a coypu, a South American water rat, believed to have been erradicated from the UK decades ago.
Police say they will be looking into the matter after Sky Tyne and Wear broke the story.
The rodent was first spotted by the boyfriend of Mr Watson’s granddaughter, while he was cutting grass on a tractor.
Mr Watson told Sky Tyne and Wear said: “I heard him shouting there was a giant rat so I came running round the corner.
"I managed to grab some wood on the way. It wasn’t very fast because it was that big. I managed to kill it there and then, I’ve never seen a rat as big in my life before.”
It came to light when Mr Watson’s friend, Bri Mitchell, posted a picture of the rodent after it had been caught, on Twitter.
Police officers will need more information about the animal and the circumstances surrounding its death before they can decide whether any crime has been committed.
A spokesman for Durham Police said: “We are aware of this incident and our officers will be looking into it in due course.”
- Is This The Biggest Rat You Have Ever Seen?
- Man Who Killed 4ft Rat Receives Death Threats
- Adders Spotted By Tyne And Wear Couple
- Is This Really A 4ft Giant Rat?
- Saving A Species One Duckling's Step At A Time
- Monkey Mayhem In Tynemouth
What do you think?
More from News
- Simonside Challenge Soapbox Derby: Wacky Races In Northumberland
- Fasten Your Seatbelts: Rally Event Aims To Bring Motorsport To Sunderland
- Police Release John 'The Badge' Roberts Reconstruction Video And Help Plea
- Meet The North East Beauty Queens Fighting For The Miss England Crown
- Tragedy To Triumph: Inspirational Story Of ‘Britain’s Best Groomed Man’
- Drugs Cash And Suspected Stolen Property Seized In Police Raids As 18 Arrested
- Petrol Attack On Newcastle Man In His Own Home
- From The Mouths Of Babes: The Truth About Toddler Talk