Red panda ambles down the street after escaping Newquay Zoo

Locals were given a pleasant surprise after they saw an adorable red panda 'ambling' down the street after a daring escape from Newquay Zoo.

Police said the endangered animal, which is native to the Himalayas and China, was spotted next to rows of apples and pears at a wholesale fruit market in Springfield Road in Newquay, Cornwall.

Staff from Freshpoint greengrocers, which is about half a mile from the zoo, along with officers from Devon and Cornwall Police contained the red panda, who recently moved to Newquay, in a courtyard until it was collected by zoo staff.

Inspector Guy Blackford from Devon and Cornwall Police joked about the rescue mission in a tweet, saying 'Not often @NewquayPolice @NewquayResponse get sent to an escaped red panda from the local zoo which was found by Newquay fruit sales.

'Panda rescue is not a topic taught in police training yet!'

Dave Folland, Head of Newquay Zoo told the BBC: 'On Friday morning, a red panda called Sundara, who had arrived at Newquay Zoo earlier this month, escaped from her enclosure.

'Our team responded in accordance with well-practised procedures and she was swiftly recaptured and returned to her home.'

Devon and Cornwall Police said they were called on Friday at 7.10am after 'reports that a red panda had been found on Springfield Road, Newquay'.

The forced added: 'Officers attended and kept the animal contained until zoo staff arrived a short time later to return it safely.'