Police in Australia are getting used to sharing their station with a baby wombat.
Ted, an eight-month-old bare-nosed wombat, has become a regular at Queanbeyan Police Station in New South Wales after one of their officers, who also volunteers for a wildlife rescue charity, took him in last month.
Senior Constable Tori Murray, a Wildcare volunteer, took Ted into her home after his mother was hit and killed by a car last month, and he will remain in her care for at least another year before being released back into the wild.
“The officers at Queanbeyan have taken very positively to Ted,” said Monaro Police District Inspector Charles Hutchins. “As you can appreciate with a baby animal, everyone’s very nurturing and caring and very interested in the process that he’ll undertake before he’s released back into the wild.
“I’m sure there’s plenty of cuddles that are being passed around the office.”
Mr Hutchins said it is “definitely out of the norm” to have wildlife in the office, but Ted is fitting in well.
Ted is often said to be found either sleeping under a desk or following officers around the building.
“The care that all of our officers are showing Ted is definitely the same care we provide to the community,” Mr Hutchins said.
“Here at Monaro Police District, we take our jobs very seriously and part of that is providing an excellent level of customer service.”
Mr Hutchins encouraged people to try to be aware of wildlife while driving.
He said: “If you see an animal near the road, we encourage you to slow down if possible, exercise caution and drive to the conditions, so that way we’ll show some kindness to the animals by the roads.”