UK

Penguin Spotted On Polkerris Beach In Cornwall? (PICTURE)

12/02/2014 16:33 GMT | Updated 12/02/2014 16:59 GMT

The UK weather is currently going haywire – but does that explain the apparent sighing on a penguin on a British beach?

The portly black and white bird was reportedly spotted waddling through the sands of Cornwall’s Polkerris beach.

Chantelle Smith told SWNS: “I was with a friend walking over the harbour when I saw it run past.

penguin on cornwall beach

'I saw it run past': Chantelle Smith says she say a penguin bolting down Cornwall's Polkerris beach

"At first I thought it was just a rabbit but when I turned on the torch of my phone to have a look I could see it was a penguin - an actual penguin.”

The 25-year-old added: "It sat there for ages and I managed to get quite close and take the picture and then ran off. I was just shocked.

"I thought 'that can't be a penguin' but it definitely looked like a penguin. Everybody I have told thinks I am crazy but I am being honest. I am going to call it Pingu."

Penguins are aquatic, flightless birds, which live mostly in the Southern Hemisphere, especially Antarctica.

Gales are battering much of the country – including the south west coast, which this weekend saw 70mph gusts and 30ft waves.

And it wouldn't be the first time an animal had been blown off course, as this nightclubbing baby seal found last year.

But as much as HuffPost UK is personally holding out for a influx of penguins on these shores, experts say it could simply be a case of mistaken identity as guillemots and razorbills are similar in appearance when they walk.

Stewart Muir, director of Newquay Zoo said: "I can almost certainly tell you what it is and it's not the first time this has happened.

"We have had this before over many years. When guillemots and razorbills stand up they look like little penguins.

"They can give a fair impression under water as well as they can swim at great speed using their short wings."

20 Positive Penguins