Page last updated at 15:34 GMT, Monday, 8 June 2009 16:34 UK

'Do not feed' on-the-run wallaby

Mr Lowden said Hopper appeared to be fit and healthy

People are being urged not to feed a wallaby which escaped from an enclosure in Northumberland.

Hopper, a two-year-old male, dug its way out of the Kielder Water Bird of Prey Centre near Hexham, on 31 May.

Since then there have been several sightings by members of the public, some of whom have fed the marsupial bread or fruit.

But the centre's owner Ray Lowden said Hopper is less likely to approach staff if he has already eaten.

Mr Lowden said: "He was first spotted on Friday, but by the time we got there he had gone.

"He was also spotted on Saturday and Sunday but again he had gone when we arrived.

"People think they are doing the best thing in the world by feeding him, but the problem is that he's less likely to approach us when he's not hungry."

Hopper is thought to be living within just a few miles of the centre.

Many of the sightings have been at the nearby Calvert Trust, an activity site for people with disabilities.

Mr Lowden added: "The important thing is that he's fit and healthy, so it's just a waiting game at the moment."

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