Scottish Reporter Stitched Up By Aussies Who Told Her She Was Holding A 'Drop Bear'
A Scottish reporter has been duped by a bunch of Aussies, who told her that she could meet a 'drop bear'.
Never heard of a drop bear? You might well do in Australia, where locals warn tourists to avoid the notorious creatures at all costs.
Forget worrying about spiders or snakes; these marsupials will drop from the trees and sink their vicious fangs into your neck without a second's hesitation.
Well, that's at least what they tell people. It's actually a notorious stitch-up in Australia - drop bears, of course, do not exist. Invariably, they're just trying to throw you a curveball with some nonsense about lovable koalas (who, rest assured, won't try to make you into their next meal).
But sadly, ITV News' Asia correspondent Debi Edward wasn't aware of the joke and was absolutely owned when she visited bushfire-ravaged Kangaroo Island.
A video of the encounter has been uploaded by Debi's cameraman and producer Sean Mulcahy, showing Debi trying to remain calm while meeting a 'drop bear'.
Donning the 'drop bear suit' she'd been warned she'd need for her own safety, she told the camera: "I'm a bit worried about why I need this much protection.
"I've been told this is quite a dangerous animal. It's been known to attack people. It's called a drop bear because they drop out of the tree and attack people.
"Everybody looks very worried about this. I'm trying not to be worried because I've been told it can sense when I'm worried."
She was particularly scared upon being warned that a dart gun was being prepared in case things escalated. The people around her then asked for the koala back and that's when the penny dropped for poor Debi. Everyone burst out laughing and she realised she'd been had.
She told 9 News: "There were points looking back obviously where I thought, 'This maybe isn't quite right,' but, you know, these guys were like, 'You should really try this, it's something we only do for our special visitors. Put on all this gear.'
"It was at the point where they said, 'I'm going to get the dart again.' And I was like, 'Oh.'"
She added that it was the only time that she saw the people around her laugh that day because they had spent so much energy fighting bushfires and making sure the animals were okay.
So at the end of the day, if she could create a few chuckles at her expense, she could walk away a happy reporter.
Bushfires on Kangaroo Island have killed two people, burned thousands of acres of land to a crisp and wiped out many more animals. The fires flared up just after New Year's Day and people have been evacuated in droves over the past few days.
A GoFundMe to help the Kangaroo Island Wildlife Park get back on its feet has so far raised more than AUD $1.7 million (£904,400 / US $1.2m).
Featured Image Credit: Sean Mulcahy/Facebook