The theft of a two metre-high bronze sculpture from a public walkway in central Wellington has been labelled "a bit of a mystery" by police.
The sculpture was removed from the walkway between Victoria Street and Chews Lane - opposite the Central Wellington police station - in the "weeks leading up to 18 March", police said.
The 120kg sculpture has been valued at $65,000.
So far, inquiries with art dealers and auction houses have turned up nothing.
"It is all a bit of a mystery as the sculpture is almost two metres tall and weighs around 120 kilograms so it would have taken some planning to remove without anyone noticing," Detective Constable Bryan Miller said.
"It is too heavy for most people to lift so whoever has taken it would have had to use a trolley or something else to move it".
"Given how distinctive it is we believe someone will either recognise the sculpture or remember people talking about it. We aren't ruling out the possibility that it has been taken simply for the value of the metal it was made of," Mr Miller said.
Scrap metal dealers who know of people wanting to trade "significant quantities of copper" should contact police, he said.
Anyone with any information should contact Wellington Police on (04) 381 2000. Information can also be provided anonymously through Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.