A tiger has been spotted emerging from a river in a city as police issued a warning to residents.
A Sheriff’s deputy in Knoxville, Tennessee, in the US, saw the big cat emerge from a river before prowling the streets in an industrial park.
Another sighting was reported on Thursday by a member of the public just a few miles away, according to Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA).
The beast remains on the loose but there have not been any more sightings.
Police are pleading with neighbours to check CCTV cameras in case they have caught a glimpse of the big cat.
Representatives from Tiger Haven, a no-kill tiger sanctuary in Kingston, Tennessee, are helping with the search, according to the sheriff’s office.
The officer who originally saw the predator was following up a job when he saw the large cat rise out of the French Broad River, police spokeswoman Kimberly Glenn told Knox News.
She said: “After a brief moment of shock, he realised it really was a tiger.
“It went into a thick area of kudzu plants.”
The officer insisted he hadn’t fallen asleep and dreamed the ordeal.
Between 15 and 20 people scoured the area looking for the escaped cat but there has only been one other sighting.
TWRA spokesman Matt Cameron said in an email on Thursday: “A trap baited with chicken was set last night but was pulled this afternoon due to inactivity and the subsequent report of the cat a few miles away.
“A wildlife officer is actively looking for the animal at this time.”
Authorities are stumped as to where the tiger has come from.
They are only seen in the wild in east Asia.