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Search continues for alligator, likely a pet set free

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Aug. 3, 2015 By Michael Florio

The search continues for an alligator in Flushing Meadows Corona Park.

The 110 police precinct, which responded to a call Saturday that there was a alligator in the park, will continue to search for the gator by sending out officers to check the area for about an hour each day, unless another sighting occurs, according to Capt. Christopher Manson, the commanding officer of the precinct.

The Parks Department is now taking over the search.

A jogger discovered the alligator in the park Saturday morning under the Long Island Expressway (across from parking lots 4A and 4B) and called 911.

The responding officer then witnessed the alligator before the creature scurried away, Manson said. The precinct then conducted a search.

Police described the gator as about three and a half feet long and pretty thick.

The search for the gator continued throughout the weekend.

Manson was unsure as to how many people from the Parks Dept. will be involved in the search.

The alligator was likely a pet that either got too big or the owner struggled to take care of it so it was set free in the park, Manson said. He does not believe there are other gators in the park.

“It could have gotten too big or someone’s mom found it and made them get rid of it,” he said with a laugh. “I think it’s just this one gator that was let go in the park.”

Manson wants to find the alligator for the safety of the animal and peace of mind for residents.

“The alligator is not a threat at all,” he said. “He would scare somebody more than he can hurt them.”

“The alligator needs to be in his natural habitat,” he added.

The Parks Department and animal control did not respond to request for comments.

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