An unidentified flying object was spotted hovering above rural Hastings yesterday.

A student pilot captured a shot of the mysterious object, which seemed rather indecisive about what direction it was going.

Freelance photographer Tim Whittaker posted the photos on his Facebook page and received plenty of suggestions about what the object might be, from a drone wearing a raincoat to an escaped roast turkey.

Hawke's Bay Aerodrome flight instructor Cassandra Jefferies said the object was first spotted at about 600m or 2000ft above the aerodrome and aircraft was sent up in an attempt to identify it.

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"We snapped the photo while flying a Tomahawk plane, it was moving pretty quickly and the fact that it was windy didn't help.

"The students who spotted it said they thought they saw flashing lights on the object.

"To me, it looked like a toy gorilla with a backpack on," she said.

The student flyer claimed that at one point the object moved in one direction, then returned the same way it came before disappearing out of sight.

The image of the mystery object continued to cause plenty of creative speculation on social media - from a "floating blow up hippopotamus" to a "giant floating football helmet", or even "ET returning for more Reese's Pieces".

A police spokesperson said Eastern Police had not received any calls about the sighting.

It's not the first time strange objects and fluorescent lights have been spotted in Hawke's Bay skies, with recorded sightings dating back to 1953.