LITHIA, FL (WFLA) – A Florida family woke up Wednesday morning to find an uninvited guest in their pool, a big alligator.
Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to a home in Lithia’s Fishhawk Ranch subdivision Wednesday morning.
Deputies posted photos to Twitter showing the big gator lounging at the bottom of the pool. The gator measured at just over 7 ft. long, according to Rob Upthegrove, a trapper with the Statewide Nuisance Alligator Program.
Upthegrove was able to capture the gator by waring it down then securing its mouth. He already had two traps on the nearby lake trying to catch the gator after nuisance calls were made.
Orlando Mora, the homeowner believes the gator went through a screen door to get to the pool.
Mora says the area is known to have an abundance of wildlife and he would occasionally see gators sunbathing next to a lake. He says a couple years ago the family helped a small deer out of the pool and he never thought he’d see a gator in there as well.
Upthegrove says gators are moving around in search of new water or food due to several days of heavy rainfall in the region. He also trapped an 11-foot gator that was spotted crossing a nearby road in the Keysville area.
Both gators will be taken to an alligator farm where they will be protected under a statewide program and used for breeding.