On Sunday, police in Scott County, Mississippi, finally cornered and subdued one of the emus that have apparently been threatening motorists on Interstate Highway 20 for the last few days.
If you are traveling in the area, please be aware that an Emu Alert has been declared for Scott and surrounding counties until further notice.
Motorists on I-20 near the town of Forest had been calling 911 since Friday to report at least two large flightless birds running around on or near the highway. More calls on Sunday led police to an on-ramp where they found one of the emus loitering (knowing emus, it was probably panhandling). They were able to surround it, but were forced to tase the bird when it refused to surrender peacefully. Police then handcuffed the emu and took it into custody.
The whereabouts of the bird's accomplice remain unknown.
Emus, which are not at all attractive but reportedly taste good, can reach six feet in height and weigh as much as 140 pounds. Though they are native to Australia, according to the USDA the birds are now raised in 43 of the 50 states (presumably including Mississippi), and there may be as many as one million emus in the country. Most, of course, are law-abiding.
As of September 20, police had not been able to identify the bird's owner or the farm, if any, from which it might have escaped.