Concerns about the near-extinction of the graceful gazelle-like mammal the Westerweld have abated after it was revealed that there is no such creature and that the crisis had been invented by an attention-seeking environmentalist.
“I guess I was depressed about my girlfriend leaving me, and maybe at some level hoped this crusade might bring her back’ admitted disgraced eco-campaigner Paul Bodin.
Following sustained efforts by Mr Bodin, the animal had been put on the ‘critical list’ of the World Wide Fund for Nature and the campaign to save the ‘beautiful and serene’ Westerweld was endorsed celebrities such as Bono, Sting and Carol Vorderman. But after the creatures near-demise became the subject of heated exchanges between western naturalists and politicians in the Westerweld’s ‘native’ Namibia, the hoax was exposed and Mr Bodin was forced to confess. ‘I don’t know what I was thinking. I mean there are a lot of wonderful animals at risk from extinction, but the Westerweld isn’t one of them. Sorry.’
It transpires that ‘Westerveld’ is in fact the name of a goal-keeper who used to play for Liverpool Football Club.