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Emu returns home to new Swansea resident after five days on the run

"I pulled in and I go, 'There's my Big Bird!'"

SWANSEA, S.C. — A new neighbor in South Carolina has already necked her way into Swansea thanks to an animal mishap. 

After five days of searching and knocking on neighbors' doors, Barbara Kennedy found her lost emu. 

"That was how I met my neighbors, 'Hello, I have a big bird, where is he?'" Kennedy said.

Kennedy is new to Swansea after only being in her home officially for one week. She moved from upstate New York. 

"Where I lived, everybody knew me as Barb; we're moving. Can you take my animals?" Kennedy said.

She rescued animals of all kinds: pigs, chickens, geese, alpacas, and horses.

"I've always loved animals, and I guess I can't turn my back on 'em," Kennedy said.

This includes her six-month-old emu. 

"Well, this is Big Bird, the little mischief one," Kennedy said.

Kennedy said that he was missing five days after he escaped. 

"He used to walk the fence line and I thought he was fine and then I looked an hour later and he was gone," Kennedy said.

Kennedy's daughter from Summerville posted in Swansea community Facebook pages to get the word out. 

Sunday morning, Kennedy got a call from a neighbor about two miles down the road.

"So, finally, the granddaughter got the gate open to their backyard, and she shooed him in, and then they called me," Kennedy said. "I jumped in my truck, grabbed a sock, and it was raining this morning, and I pulled in, and I go, 'There's my Big Bird!"

Kennedy said she plans to buy new wire fencing to help prevent this fiasco from happening again. 

According to Lexington County leaders, emus are allowed. 

Kennedy said that, as she's getting acclimated to the South Carolina Midlands, she wants to connect to some farmers who sell hay, corn and oats. 

If you have any suggestions for her, you can email her at barbandstride@yahoo.com.


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