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DUBLIN – Researchers at University College Dublin made waves in the scientific community by capturing a real live leprechaun!

The leprechaun was caught early yesterday morning in Dublin’s Donadea forest.

According to laboratory reports, the scientists used a bowl of marshmallow flavored cereal to entice the leprechaun out into the open. As soon as the miniature creature bent down to grab the sugary snack, they ensnared him in a tiny net.

“The little guy was uncooperative at first,” said laboratory technician Patrick McMally. “He was thrashing around in the net and clawing at our hands like he wanted to escape.”

“He even tried to hit us with his little shillelagh,” added McMally. “It was adorable.”

Seamus Doolittle, the lead scientist in ‘Project Leprechaun,’ described the creature as a “small, wrinkly old man with a bulbous nose and frizzy red beard.”

According to Doolittle, the leprechaun was wearing a pair of dark green knickerbockers, a frilly white shirt, buckled shoes, white stockings, and a top hat. He was also carrying a pot of gold.

“He stood about three feet high,” added Doolitttle, “which was a lot bigger than we expected him to be.”

Doolittle said he got the idea to catch a leprechaun after hearing colleagues say that the mythical creature did not exist.

“Most scientists don’t believe in leprechauns,” said Doolittle. “I wanted to prove them all wrong, so I set out to the woods to catch one myself.”

“And if there’s still any doubt,” added Doolittle, “tell those skeptics to come look at the little bugger in my lab. That’ll shut ‘em up.”

After capturing the leprechaun, the scientists brought him back to the university’s laboratory, where they performed numerous tests, including blood work, DNA sampling, fingerprinting, and a thorough Riverdance inspection.

The scientists said that when the initial testing phase is over, they plan on keeping the little Irish man as a pet.

“He’ll probably end up as the football team’s mascot,” said Doolittle.

Experts say the leprechaun can be added to a long list of mythical creatures that were once thought to be “imaginary’ but were later proven to exist, including Bigfoot, the Loch Ness Monster, Bat Boy, the Abominable Snowman, and Vanilla Ice.

“Too many people out there just don’t believe in mythical creatures,” said Doolittle. “But they’re out there and they’re real.”

Weekly World News couldn’t agree more, and we know our readers feel the very same way. So tell us about your own mythical creature sightings by posting them in the comment box below. Who knows, it could be our next big story!