An emu roamed the streets of a Northland town this afternoon until firefighters managed to catch the flightless bird.

The bird escaped from its paddock and local called emergency services about 1.30pm as it wandered around Mangawhai.

But rather than stick their heads in the sand, members of the Mangawhai and Kaiwaka fire brigades got to work on rounding it up.

Underneath this mass of firefighters is an emu that had done a runner in Mangawhai.
Underneath this mass of firefighters is an emu that had done a runner in Mangawhai.

Eventually, about 2.10pm, it was caught.

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"We went and helped and got it secured in a van," a Fire Service spokesman said.

He said it was caught through "lots of running round and arm waving".