Alligator Found Outside Florida Elementary School

Written by Cindy Rasmussen
Published: July 24, 2022
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Continue Reading To See This Amazing Video

Monday mornings are tough enough but what do you do when you get to school and find an alligator blocking the door! That is exactly what Assistant Principal Erin Williams had to deal with on Monday, May 16, 2022, at her elementary school in St. Cloud, FL. Of courses the alligator showed up right during drop-off time! Her first thought was, “How do I get the kids safe, how do I get the staff safe.”

Alligators are common in Florida, they have a range as far north as southern North Carolina and west to Texas and can be found throughout Florida, including the Keys. They live in swamps, ponds, rivers and in Florida, the Everglades. Interactions with humans is not that unordinary and are usually resolved peacefully. If you happen to find an alligator on your property you can call the authorities and they will come remove it. That is exactly what happened to the gator the school named “Zeus” that was outside their door. They named him Zeus, “because he was a big dude!”

The surveillance video shows police officer Burrows with a catch pole looped around the gators snout but the alligator was not going to leave without a fight. The 6-foot long gator thrashes around, flipping over multiple times trying to get free. Officer burrows steps back and jockeys for better footing, trying to wrangle the gator in. Three more officers are shown helping to keep the gator down while they banded its mouth shut and taped its legs. Two officers carried it off to their vehicle.

The news report indicated that the alligator was safely transported and released in a canal away from the school and was uninjured. The officers jokingly posted on their social media about the alligator found outside Florida elementary school. They said that the alligator got a stern warning to stay clear of the school!

While this alligator was 6-feet long, they can get much bigger when full grown. American alligators can get to be 15-feet long and weigh 800 pounds! It would have taken a lot more than just a few officers to remove an alligator that big! One of the largest alligators ever caught is known as the “Stokes Gator” caught by Mandy Stokes along the Alabama River. The record-breaking alligator was 15 feet 9 inches and weighed 1,011.5 pounds! Can you imagine how huge that is?

A family in Punta Gorda, Fl woke up to find an 11-foot long alligator hanging out in their backyard pool! This happened on May 19, 2022, just a few days after the incident in St. Cloud, FL at the elementary school. The increase in alligator incidents corresponds to the alligators mating season which begins in May and June. So there may be more headlines like “alligator found outside Florida elementary school” in those months. Luckily, both of these cases were resolved without anyone or “anygator” being injured. The kids at the elementary school thought it was the coolest thing ever!

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About the Author

I'm a Wildlife Conservation Author and Journalist, raising awareness about conservation by teaching others about the amazing animals we share the planet with. I graduated from the University of Minnesota-Morris with a degree in Elementary Education and I am a former teacher. When I am not writing I love going to my kids' soccer games, watching movies, taking on DIY projects and running with our giant Labradoodle "Tango".

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