Internet sleuths, put on your Sherlock Holmes hats... there's a mystery afoot! "Does anyone know what species my new friend is?" asked a Fishkill resident regarding an animal she caught on camera outside her house. The internet had a field day.

Facebook/Jennifer Glasheen
Facebook/Jennifer Glasheen
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Mystery Animal in the Hudson Valley, NY

Take one look at the photo and you're intrigued. Naturally, the blurriness wasn't helping anyone. "Pic looks like it’s from the early 1900’s", commented one Facebook detective. "Worst picture ever", seconded another. Luckily, some other gumshoes were more willing to lend a helping hand. "What are we looking at here? Hard to tell what the surrounding area is", asked one concerned commenter. Then the answers began to roll in...

Facebook/Jennifer Glasheen/Amazon
Facebook/Jennifer Glasheen/Amazon
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A few commenters thought it may be a fox, while still others suspected a racoon. A more popular answer, however, came straight off the shelves of Petsmart. "[It looks like a Weazel Ball]… my dogs love this toy", offered more than one helpful investigator. Some other identifications came from a different continent all together.

Facebook/Jennifer Glasheen/Vac1/pixabay/Canva
Facebook/Jennifer Glasheen/Vac1/pixabay/Canva
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"Platypus", Katie B. succinctly contributed. "Duck billed platypus", Don P. chimed in. While the world's most confounding mammal does bear a striking resemblance to the mystery critter spotted in Dutchess County, odds are low that one of them was able to make the swim from their native Australia. The real answer may be a bit more boring.

Facebook/Jennifer Glasheen/Harry Collins via Canva
Facebook/Jennifer Glasheen/Harry Collins via Canva
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"Coyote .. cam straight down.. top view" suggested a more practical nature enthusiast. "I think it’s a coyote- tail north nose south" agreed another. Though the angle is admittedly tricky, comparing the coloring of the animal in the camera footage with a much higher-resolution picture of a coyote (above), it does seem to be the most likely answer. When the original poster was contacted, she agreed. "We [now] think it's a coyote", she reported. Oh well... I guess the only time we can see a platypus in the Hudson Valley is when a live action Phineas and Ferb comes to town.

And speaking of awesome animals, check out the amazing hiking therapy animals in the Hudson Valley... including Eleanor Pigby and Sawyer the goat below.

Meet the Hiking Therapy Animals of the Hudson Valley

Eleanor Pigby made a splash on social media around the Hudson Valley this week. Turns out she's part of a pretty special team. Get to know Eleanor and the rest of the Pets For Purpose Animal Therapy group of The Summit School in Nyack.

Wild Animals in Rehab

When we see an animal that has been hurt or is in distress it is in our nature to want to help but the reality is we need to leave it to the professional. Our job is to report it so that trained people can step in to assist the animal that needs help. Luckily there are many Animal Rehabilitators in the Hudson Valley who are good at what they do.