MOST people take to the streets with “missing cat” or “missing dog” posters when their beloved family pet goes AWOL.
The poster appears on Linden Road in Hampton, London, requesting people to keep an eye out for “Rupert”.
The image, shared by Diana Steele on social media, shows the poster tacked to a telegraph pole, enveloped in a poly pocket.
The strange poster reads “MISSING” in block capitals, with the request “Please check garages/sheds” printed below.
What appears to be a stock image of a Komodo dragon takes up most of the poster, but some additional information on the giant lizard is attached.
The rest of the poster reads “Rupert is a much-loved Komodo dragon that has been missing since Sunday 5th September.
“Approximately 65kg and 3m in length. Reward offered.”
It then concludes with a contact number for the mysterious person behind the appeal.
Diana posted the photo to Facebook on Friday, with the caption “Has anyone else seen this? Can’t be serious surely?!”
Whilst almost certainly a joke, the poster has gained some attention, with users quick to react to the whole situation.
Felicity Lucinda Warwick said: “Some people genuinely have these and other exotic animals as pets.
“While I think it’s probably a joke because of the stock image it’s not totally impossible. My neighbour’s got toads and owls…all Sorts of weird stuff haha.”
Ionela Emmett commented: “I think the most exotic animal running the streets of Hampton is a fox!”
Adam Flowers said: “It’s a joke. Their saliva is poisonous and they can eat small children.”
John Routledge added: “When searching be careful not to step in the bu****it.”
Maryam Khorsandi-Evans was impressed at the effort of the joke: “Brilliant to whoever went to the trouble!”
Komodo dragons are native to the Indonesian islands of Komodo, Rinca, Flores, and Gili Motang.
It is the largest existing species of lizard, growing to a maximum length of 3 metres, and weighing up to 70 kilogrammes.
Notoriously dangerous creatures, Komodo dragons have venomous saliva, are capable of outrunning humans over short distances and are extremely territorial – having attacked and killed humans in the past.
First recorded by scientists in 1910, their large size and fearsome reputation make them popular zoo exhibits.
Currently listed as endangered, they are an internationally protected species, making private ownership nigh impossible.