Citing the recent tragic death of an 85-year-old woman due to an alligator attack in St. Lucie, Florida, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) is reminding residents to remain vigilant when in areas known to include the reptiles.
According to FWC spokesperson Arielle Callender, the elderly woman was with her dog when the incident happened on Monday. FWC and the St. Lucie County Sheriff’s Office were notified via a 911 call. Although the pet escaped, its condition remains unknown.
Media affiliate WPTV indicated that the animal was taken by an alligator, prompting the woman to pursue it, though she eventually became the victim instead. Sheriff Ken Mascara speculated that the reptile was approximately eleven feet long.
Fortunately, the alligator responsible for the fatal encounter was located and captured by a nuisance alligator trapper shortly after the incident. FWC expressed their sympathy to the victim’s family and friends via a statement, along with the fact that serious alligator-related injuries are relatively uncommon in the state.
FWC’s Statewide Nuisance Alligator Program (SNAP) is available to handle complaints involving alligators that may threaten people, pets or property. In addition, the FWC encourages Floridians to remain aware of their surroundings when entering an area with a gator presence.