It was a Christmas miracle for one lucky turkey who decided to play chicken with traffic on a busy Rotorua street this week.
Paul Fitzgerald was pulling out of Ford Rd on to Malfroy Rd around 1.45pm yesterday when a turkey ran out in front of his car.
"He ran from left to right because the traffic was pretty heavy. He just stayed in the middle but miraculously kept dodging the traffic.
"I pulled over and tried to usher him off to the side of the road. He'd let me get within a metre and a half of him then he would just gallop and away he'd go."
Fitzgerald said the turkey eventually ran up into a backyard of a property.
"I thought chickens were fast but turkeys are faster. He was the Usain Bolt of turkeys .. he looked me in the eye and said 'not today fat man' then gunned it.
"So I let him have his well earned freedom."
Rachel Weinberg also had an encounter with the turbo turkey when it ran out in front of her car on Malfroy Rd.
"I had to brake and so did the car coming towards me," she told the Rotorua Daily Post.
"I couldn't believe it. Strangest sight I've seen in a while and it looked as shocked as I did!"
The turkey then made it's way to the back garden of Malfroy resident Wanda Kendrick.
She said she got a text from her neighbour about 8pm last night saying "there's a turkey in your backyard".
It was a bit of surprise and she said the turkey had "made a home in my tree" and left the odd poo in the garden.
It had popped over to her neighbours but "it seems to like this area with all the bush around and all", she said.
"It's better in that being surrounded by vegetables on a dinner plate," she said with a laugh.
She was trying to contact the SPCA to retrieve the bird but said she hoped a family was not going to go hungry without it.