A massive 12-foot, 463-pound alligator wandered onto Interstate 10 around midnight on June 3, causing temporary closures of the Monroe Street exit, according to the Florida Highway Patrol and Tallahassee Police Department.
Vaughan’s Gators was called to trap the large reptile. Owner Broderick Vaughan has been trapping gators for a decade and said it’s the third largest reptile he’s ever seen.
“I’ve been the trapper here in Leon County since April 2010 and that was the third biggest gator I’ve ever captured,” Vaughan said, according to the Naples Daily News.
A semi truck had reportedly run over the gator’s large snout, which stunned it, but only made it mad.
“He wasn’t happy we were trying to remove him,” Vaughan said.
He was able to snare the massive creature and get tape around its injured snout. Using a hoist, he was able to safely load the animal onto his truck.
Unfortunately, Vaughan said the injuries turned out to be more severe than originally presumed and they had to euthanize the gator a few days later.
Vaughan told the Bradenton Herald on Thursday that it turned out the collision with the semi “had crushed its skull pretty good. He had worked his way to the edge of the guardrail by the time I got there and I couldn’t see him right away because the Florida Highway Patrol vehicles were blocking it. I came around and that’s when I saw how big he was.”
Vaughan said it was the third time this year alone that he has been called to trap a gator from the roadway.
Alligator mating season technically begins in April as the animals being their annual courtship rituals, but this is the time of the year when the gators are mating. Each year during mating season, alligator nuisance calls go on the rise as gators wander into areas where they where they are not normally seen.
Females will begin making their nests and laying the eggs for the rest of this month and into early July and the hatchlings will arrive into the world from about mid-August through early September.