MOUNT DORA, Fla. – Nearly one day after Palm Island Park temporarily closed due to an “aggressive alligator,” the Mount Dora Police Department said the park reopened Monday morning.
The department posted on Sunday morning that the park would be closed because of the alligator. Police said the park reopened around 7:30 a.m. after officers arrived and the gator was gone.
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Police warn people to be aware and to not engage if they see any alligators.
Video taken by Rick Cooper of Mount Dora showed the gator in a bench area of the boardwalk with a bird of some kind in its mouth.
Being July, it’s currently alligator breeding season, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. Gators will typically begin to court one another starting in early April before mating season kicks off in May or June, followed by the laying of eggs that normally hatch from mid-August to early September.
Police have not said whether officers or any other officials believe the testy creature at Palm Island Park is a mother alligator sitting on dozens of eggs, but News 6 was given the following list of alligator safety tips by Gatorland at the onset of Alligator breeding season this year:
- Alligators can be very territorial, and many are on the move looking for mates.
- When water levels are low, this also puts alligators on the move.
- Use extra caution in the morning or evening hours in shallow water, as alligators may think the splashing is an animal at the water’s edge.
- Stay away from alligators you see in the wild and do not feed them.
- Remember, it is against the law in the State of Florida to feed or harass an alligator in the wild.
- Report any alligator concerns by contacting the FWC.
This is a developing story. Check back with News 6 for the latest updates.
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