A pet emu that became an online celebrity while on the lam for several months in Sherburne County was captured Saturday in Big Lake after being cornered in a parking lot by police officers and residents.
Unfortunately, it was the final adventure for Dork the emu.
On Saturday afternoon, the Big Lake Police Department posted the story on its Facebook page: “Within the last hour, Dork was spotted near Earl Road in the City of Big Lake. A neighbor was able to contain Dork in his yard while his owner and Big Lake Police responded to assist with his capture. The owner, police officers, and residents did an excellent job of taking Dork into custody (several were kicked by him). Unfortunately Dork passed away during this process. It is very common for emus under stress to suffer cardiac arrest, which appears to have occurred in this instance.”
Emus, which are native to Australia, are often raised as pets or livestock. They’re the second-biggest bird on Earth, weighing from 110 to 150 pounds.
Dork, who escaped from owner Tom Berry’s home in nearby Becker in early summer, had become a celebrity of sorts on Facebook, where fans created a page to celebrate and track him that was followed by more than 3,000 people. It was loaded with photos of Dork, or purporting to be of him, during his summer and fall on the run.
The latest photos on the page were of the big bird were taken during his final encounter with humans. After getting in a few kicks, he collapsed and died.
As the police post concluded, “Rest in peace, Dork.”