The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Local News

July 11, 2013

Alligator found in Colbert County set free on Elk River

— A 6-foot alligator found Tuesday in a creek near Florence is now living the good life in a more remote area on the Elk River near Rogersville.

The gator’s move from Cypress Creek to the Elk River — which is located on the Limestone County/Lauderdale County line — had some residents concerned. But conservation officers could not simply kill the animal, a Lauderdale County Sheriff’s dispatcher confirmed Wednesday.

Lauderdale County Animal Control Officer Dewayne Oliver captured the alligator Tuesday in Cypress Creek with a noose after a camper spotted the gator off County Road 6. The unharmed alligator was released in the Elk River near Rogersville, a Lauderdale County Sheriff’s dispatcher confirmed Wednesday. After learning about the alligator, Oliver called the game warden, and the two decided to transfer the gator to an area on the Elk River.

State law prevents the killing of alligators (except in certain areas of the state during certain hunting seasons to those with permits), so the alligator was moved to an open area away from people, the dispatcher said.

Limestone County Animal Control Officer Joe Moss said he was unaware of the gator’s move to the Elk River.

Darryl Askew, senior supervisor for the Alabama Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries law-enforcement section, said he was aware of the alligator move but he did not know precisely where on the Elk River the animal was relocated.

Alligators occur naturally in scattered populations in Alabama, he said, offering the following advice: “Like any wild animal, you have to take appropriate precautions, just as you would with copperhead snakes or rattlesnakes or with bears in North Georgia or Tennessee.

“With any wild animal, there is a risk of bad experience.” Askew said.

He advised residents to “just look at them and keep a respective distance.”

The upside of alligators is that they are a “major predator” of poisonous cottonmouth snakes, which are also plentiful in Alabama, Askew said. Gators also eat fish and turtles, he said.

1
Text Only
Local News
Photos


Poll

Which foreign crisis is the biggest threat to the security of the United States?

Russia-Ukraine
Israel-Palestine
Iraq
None of the above
     View Results
Facebook
AP Video
13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground Ohio State Marching Band Chief Fired After Probe Raw: Big Rig Stuck in Illinois Swamp
Twitter Updates
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Stocks
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Business Marquee