A SHELL-SHOCKED tortoise almost came a cropper when it tried to cross a busy main road.

But luckily for the rambling reptile, eagle-eyed Simon Davison, 27, and his friend Adam Smith, 29, saw it stepping down off the kerb in East Challow as the traffic roared past.

They picked up the little reptile and gave it to Mr Davison’s mother, who lives nearby.

Helen Davison, 57, said: “We put him in the greenhouse inside a seed propagator and gave him some dandelion leaves and a little bowl of water.

“I think he is content, but I don’t know how happy a tortoise can look.”

Mrs Davison put a notice on the Wantage and Grove Facebook page to try to find the animal’s owner.

Mel D’raven-Smith commented on the post: “They’re sneaky beggars. We lost one of ours the other year. Somebody found her six months later about 10 metres from our house.”

Berks, Bucks and Oxfordshire Wildlife Trust (BBOWT) spokesman Wendy Tobitt said: “It probably woke up from hibernation, and has strayed from its home.”

“It would not have survived winter outdoors, it has been far too cold.”