'Godshilla' the dinosaur has since been returned home to Island Gems on the Isle of Wight. The owner of the triceratops said 'pranksters and drink' were thought to be behind the incident WikiCommons/HombreDHojalata

A 25ft triceratops has been found on a high street on the Isle of Wight courtesy of some pranksters who reportedly dragged the dinosaur out of a nearby shop garden that sells prehistoric fossils.

A local resident posted an image of the triceratops after he stumbled upon it during his drive home from work in the early hours of 13 February.

Chris Hollingshead took to Facebook to express his amusement at having his journey home blocked by the beast. Posting the image on his home page, Hollingshead wrote: "That priceless moment when you're driving home from work at 3am and the road is blocked by a 20ft triceratops!!"

The owner of the triceratops, Martin Simpson, who also owns the nearby fossil store, Island Gems, said that the dinosaur was part of his "Jurassic Garden", which also features scientific specimens and plants from the Jurassic period. Simpson told the BBC that he would be taking extra security measures to ensure similar incidents did not happen in future.

Speaking about the incident, Simpson added: "It takes about five blokes to move the dinosaur a couple of inches, so it was definitely a concerted effort and drink was probably involved."

Adding that the dinosaur is called Godshilla, Simpson said while he was happy that people were talking about the giant model, he didn't advocate using it as a "traffic hazard", adding that he bought the dinosaur in 2007 and she was now due for renovation. It is believed that a fence will now be constructed in the Jurassic Garden to prevent people from entering without prior authorisation.

Hundreds of people have now seen Hollingshead's photo of the Isle of Wight beast, with many dubbing the prank "genius". However, local residents have said that this isn't the first time Godshilla has been involved in some tomfoolery. Lisa Choi, owner of local pub The Taverners across the road from Island Gems in Godshill, said that someone had tied balloons around Godshilla's neck during the Christmas period, telling County Press Online, "They've gone one step further this time."