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Published: Monday, 7/27/2009

Port Clinton park provides gator aid

BLADE STAFF
The male American alligator is believed to have been someone s pet. Its age is uncertain because those raised in captivity are smaller than those in the wild. The male American alligator is believed to have been someone s pet. Its age is uncertain because those raised in captivity are smaller than those in the wild.
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PORT CLINTON Elvis the alligator is doing well at a wildlife park here after being captured from a Woodville-area creek.

The gator, which got its name from the pet alligator on Miami Vice, is eating and doing well at African Safari Wildlife Park in Port Clinton, said Bradd Biecheler, park supervisor.

The four-foot, 25-pound American alligator was spotted about 3 p.m. July 19 sunning itself on a concrete slab on the edge of Toussaint Creek near the Sandusky-Ottawa county border.

Authorities with both counties sheriff s departments as well as the Clay Township police department responded and asked the wildlife park for help capturing the alligator.

They did so through teamwork of wrestling him down and taping his mouth closed, a technique similar to that of Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin, Mr. Biecheler said.

As of Sunday, nobody had come to the park to claim the alligator, which is assumed to have been an area resident s pet, he said.

All the wrong things could happen when you have an alligator, Mr. Biecheler said. He is going to grow out of his environment fast, he ll eat you out of house and home, and he could be aggressive.

It s hard to tell how old the alligator is because those raised in captivity are smaller than those in the wild, he said.

The alligator is in a kennel-style cage with a five-foot swimming pool. The plan is to give the owner a couple of weeks to claim the animal. If nobody does, it would be placed in a suitable location, according to the Sandusky County Sheriff s Office.



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