Kenosha police find alligator 'taking a stroll' on city's north side

NOW: Kenosha police find alligator ’taking a stroll’ on city’s north side

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KENOSHA, Wis. (CBS 58) -- In Wisconsin, there are no state laws prohibiting the ownership of exotic animals, except if they are native to our land.

Tuesday, one exotic pet owner was reunited with their missing alligator.

CBS 58 spoke with the owner and an exotic wildlife expert who says they are shocked by the number of exotic animals funneled through our state.

John Moyles, Director of J&R Aquatic animal rescue in Menasha, says there have been two alligators spotted walking around in public on the streets of Wisconsin within the past two weeks. "Big, scaly, toothy puppy," said Moyles.

Moyles says in Wisconsin, there are no overarching laws concerning exotic pets, it all depends on individual municipality. Those municipalities are responsible for coming up with and enforcing laws.

Moyles says since February of 2022, there have been four alligators brought to him, all from various regions in Wisconsin.

Last week, a two-foot alligator was brought to Moyles' operation after being found in Fond du Lac by a group of kids who caught it with a net. "He wasn’t a friendly alligator," said Moyles.

That alligator has since found a new home in Michigan at the Critchlow Alligator Sanctuary.

The owner of that alligator opted out of keeping their exotic pet.

David Prill is also on the list of exotic pet owners who have lost their reptilian friend in Wisconsin.

"Sneaky gator," said Prill.

Prill says his two-foot alligator made a great escape Tuesday morning.

Prill was notified by a friend that his alligator was missing after they saw a Facebook post from the Kenosha Police Department.

The department posted a photo on their social media page saying, "We found this fella taking a stroll on the north side of Kenosha."

Prill was able to meet up with the officers of Kenosha to retrieve his pet, something he says is a lesson learned.

Moyles still cautions people to think twice before purchasing an exotic animal, saying "you want to make sure you have the proper set-up and that you can take care of the animal throughout its entire lifespan."

Wildlife experts say if you do encounter a wild animal, it is best to contact your local animal control center.

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