Landscaper Astonished to Find Malnourished Alligator Near Pennsylvania Creek

Alligators don’t typically live in Pennsylvania, which partially explains why the one a landscaper was surprised to find near a creek was not doing particularly well.

The man was working in an outdoor location near the creek when he happened to glance down into the ravine and noticed a small creature lying in a puddle near the edge of the creek. He was shocked to discover that it was a tiny alligator.

Photo: Unsplash/Mia Anderson

The landscaper called police, who came to take possession of the two-and-a-half-foot-long critter and get it to the Animal Rescue League of Berks County (ARL). The gator was transported to the ARL’s Cumru Township shelter, where Rudy Arceo, a reptile expert from the Venom Institute in Schuylkill County, assessed its condition.

Police posted a photo of the creature and a link to a WFMZ article about the story on their Facebook page.

Photo: Unsplash/Joshua J. Cotten

It was discovered that the alligator is female and that her health is not the best. She was dehydrated an malnourished but also appeared to have some other health concerns, like a problem with her jaw shape. She was also much too small for her age. Arceo estimates that she should be at least six feet long and says that she’s likely been kept in an area that is too small for her and not provided with enough nourishment to grow properly during her 10-plus-year life.

“They need whole prey,” Arceo said. “They really need to have like small rodents, you know, with the fur, the bones, any of that dietary. They also need proper lighting.”

Photo: Pixabay/joolsthegreat

The gator allegedly escaped her outdoor enclosure during a flash flooding occurrence a couple of weeks before her rescue. Her owner has been tracked down, and that person is working with authorities to regain ownership of the creature, provided the proper care is given to her. The gator, whose name is Fluffy, will be carefully monitored as she returns to her owner’s care.

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