A student has told of the moment she saw an ape-like creature bounding across a park on all fours.
Terri Leigh Cox was looking out her bedroom window when she saw the animal tear across the grass 100 yards away from her home in Dorchester, Dorset.
She grabbed her mobile phone and took a single frame of it before it scampered up a tree and out of sight.
The 17-year-old’s boyfriend, Shaun Bessant, dashed out a few minutes later to look for the creature but found no sign of it.
Cox, a college student studying health and social care, lives 10 miles away from the famous Monkey World attraction in Wool, although staff there have not reported any lost primates.
Cox said she is certain the mysterious animal was not a dog or cat and believes it was a primate that may be an escaped pet.
She said: "It was such a shock I couldn't believe what I was seeing at first.
"It looked about the size of a small gorilla. It was walking like one as well, using its arms and feet.
"It was definitely a monkey because you could tell by its hunched back and the way it scampered across the field and up the tree.
"It wasn't a black dog. I managed to get a photo but it quickly went out of sight.
"I couldn't see it very clearly. When I tried to get another shot it had disappeared.
"I have no idea what the monkey was doing there. It could have escaped if someone was keeping it as a pet."
A spokeswoman for Monkey World said tall of its monkeys and apes were accounted for.
She said: "The image is not clear and it is difficult to make out, so we would be unable to confirm its identity.
"I can confirm that all of our rescued monkeys and apes are safe and well in the park."
Many residents and dog walkers at the park have expressed their shock at the sighting.
Derek Dodd, who walks his dog in the field, said: "I have seen a lot of wildlife on these fields but a monkey-like creature isn't one of them."
Rob Samways, who lives nearby, said: "I'll be keeping my eyes peeled from now. I supposed somebody could have been keeping it as a pet and it has escaped."