A 7-year-old boy is missing in a Japanese forest after his parents reportedly made him get out of the car as punishment.

Rescue workers resumed searching Monday in a wooded area on Hokkaido, the northernmost of Japan's four main islands. He has been missing since late Saturday afternoon.

Japanese media say the parents initially told police that their son had disappeared while they were picking wild vegetables, but they later admitted they had made him get out of the car to punish him for throwing rocks while playing at a river earlier in the day.

Japan's Kyodo News service says the father returned a few minutes later but the boy was gone.