There's still an alligator on the loose in Scandia
St. Sauver, on a boat, looking for his surviving gator yesterday. (Is that net really gonna get the job done?)
Wanna go alligator hunting this weekend? Head on up to Goose Lake in Scandia.
A few days after the DNR killed an alligator named Clyde with a shotgun blast to the head, his crocodilian friend, Bonnie, remains on the loose.
The alligators' owner is Scandia resident Will St. Sauver, who spent part of yesterday in a boat with Fox reporter Tim Blotz trying to find his surviving gator before the DNR does.
St. Sauver claims some dastardly soul recently stole his 40-inch-long pet gators from his property and released them into the lake.
"Somebody took them out. There's no way they got out," he told Blotz.
He claims to have seen Bonnie on the lake on Wednesday night, but was unable to corral him.
"I tried scooping him with the net and he turned out," he told Blotz. "I went to turn around and scoop him again and then the same thing happened. Then, I went with two nets and that didn't work."
Eventually, St. Sauver said poor Bonnie "got sick of me chasing him" and slithered back into the lake.
A Star Tribune report explains how the DNR first became aware of the gator situation on Goose Lake:
An alligator that surprised two boys fishing in a Washington County lake was shot dead by a Minnesota Department of Natural Resources enforcement officer, but another alligator remained on the loose Thursday.
The alligator, hungry for live frogs that two boys fishing Goose Lake used as bait, emerged suddenly out of the lily pads.
The boys called for help, and DNR officer Scott Arntzen killed the gator with a shotgun blast to the head from a boat and watched it sink. At three feet long, it wasn't considered dangerous, but Arntzen said alligators don't belong in Minnesota lakes and have no business alarming anglers.
DNR Central Region Enforcement Manager Greg Salo said that even if the DNR can't find Bonnie and send him to gator heaven, the cold-blooded critter won't survive the winter.
"It's not uncommon for us to find alligators in ponds, but they usually starve," Salo told the Strib. "They would never survive the winter here. This isn't the Florida Everglades."
In an interview with the Pioneer Press, Sarah Richard, adoption chairwoman for the Minnesota Herpetological Society, criticized the DNR for killing Clyde.
"They cease to be an issue in October. We were talking about how to catch it. You're talking about a two-foot alligator who couldn't hurt anybody," Richard said. "To go out and shoot it... It's unnecessary. It's not a public menace. There's no reason to go out and shoot them."
In any event, since owning exotic animals violates a Scandia city ordinance, St. Sauver's punishment could go beyond the mental anguish that comes with losing his pets.
The Scandia alligator saga comes just a week or so after a Stillwater family discovered a seven-foot boa constrictor on their deck. What's next in Washington County, a frickin' T-Rex sighting?
-- Follow Aaron Rupar on Twitter at @atrupar. Got a tip? Drop him a line at email@example.com.
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