A TEENAGE boy found an escaped wallaby on his way home from school - and befriended it with apples.

The runaway creature fled from nearby woodland and has been filmed having a wild time bounding along a country lane at around 30mph.

It has also now struck up an unlikely friendship with Finley Redford, 16, who lives near the hedge where it has made its home in Horsham.

The Argus: The wallaby escaped from the grounds of a nearby country houseThe wallaby escaped from the grounds of a nearby country house

Finley has been slicing up apples and serving them on a bed of hay after researching the right food to serve.

And he said he has been able to get progressively closer over the days since it was first seen on Tuesday April 19.

Finley contacted Leonardslee Lakes and Gardens, a country house and woodland in Horsham, who said they were missing a wallaby and would need a specialist team to bring him back.

The Argus: Wallabies are known for being able to reach high speeds when they runWallabies are known for being able to reach high speeds when they run

He said: "It’s such an awesome experience just seeing one through the hedges.

“I didn’t think it was a wallaby at first and it took me a while to work it out.

“I called my parents to come down and take a look.

“Since then I have seen it on many occasions bouncing around the streets.

“My mum's friend filmed it leaping along the road going really fast, going about 25 or 30 miles an hour.

"I slice up two apples every day and put them about three metres from him, just outside his hedge, and he eats them.

“I’ve tried sitting there but it only eats when I walk away.

“I have seen it every day so I think it does recognise me.

“On the first day I saw it I was about five metres away and when I moved it ran away, but a few days later I could get within two metres."

Finley has named the creature Wally and said it had travelled about 1.3 miles to his hedge-home from Leonardslee, where their wallabies roam ancient forest land.

The wallabies at Leonardslee are Tasmanian Bennett’s, also known as red-necked, wallabies, with a thick furry coat for getting through the winter.