New South Wales Premier Rees Says Leopard Sightings Must Be Taken Seriously

New South Wales Premier Nathan Rees says rumours that a leopard inhabits bushland on Sydney's outskirts cannot be dismissed, because the safety of children could be at risk.

Talk of panthers or leopards in the Blue Mountains and Hawkesbury region has persisted for decades and there are almost 300 claimed sightings of a big cat in the area.

While there is still no conclusive proof such an animal roams Sydney's north-western fringes, Mr Rees says the animal cannot be discounted as an urban myth.

"I know I don't do policy on the run, but I think it's three years since Minister Campbell had a look at this, I think it's probably time to do it again," he said.

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