Gators in Oregon? Kids lead cops to big lizard

Gators in Oregon? Kids lead cops to big lizard
Oregon State Police captured this alligator in the Applegate River after being tipped off by some kids who saw it. Photo courtesy of the Oregon State Police.

This is a press release courtesy of the Oregon State Police

An unusual find last weekend on Applegate River in southern Oregon is an example of the concern that Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife and Oregon State Police Fish & Wildlife Division (OSP) have related to problems surrounding bringing in and then releasing non-native species in our State.

On August 8, 2009 at about 4:00 p.m. OSP Senior Trooper Marty Marchand responded to a report that two small children went down to the Applegate River near Murphy southeast of Grants Pass where they saw an alligator on a log.

Senior Trooper Marchand confirmed the report and felt the 3 foot 6 inch long alligator could not be captured alive before it may have got back into the water.

There were no homes in the area from where it may have come from, and it was not known if the alligator escaped from an unknown home or was intentionally released by its owner. Oregon state law prohibits the release of non-native species into the wild.

Due to safety concerns that may arise trying to capture the alligator before it returned to the water, the trooper shot and killed it before climbing out onto the log and retrieving it.

Anyone with information regarding where the alligator may have originated from is asked to call Senior Trooper Marchand at (541) 955-6373.