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Posted by Brian-SFCRC on March 28, 2003 at 22:15:09:
In Reply to: IN Press: Humane Society raids home posted by W von Papinešu on February 15, 2003 at 12:04:16:
:SOUTH BEND TRIBUNE (Indiana) 15 February 03 Humane Society raids home - Alligator, pythons, pit bulls removed (Bryon Coppens)
:Photo: Humane Officer Eric Durcinka holds an alligator impounded from a Mishawaka home Friday. He estimated the alligator weighs about 50 pounds. (Bryon Coppens)
:Mishawaka: The newest resident at the St. Joseph County Humane Society won't be eating Alpo or Purina.
:It'll be placed on a steady diet of raw chicken bought whole from the area Martin's Super Market.
:An alligator, weighing about 50 pounds, was confiscated from a Mishawaka home Friday morning, along with 10 pit bulls, two pythons and a tortoise.
:The alligator's length was estimated at between 4 and 5 feet.
:"He's too mean to get a good measure right now," said Humane Officer Eric Durcinka.
:The alligator apparently shared a bedroom of the home with the pit bulls and was separated from the dogs by a 4-foot-high wire fence.
:"Not to mention that he had a 4-foot-by-12-foot pond in the room," Durcinka said.
:The other animals were easily removed from the home in the 200 block of North Elder Street, but handling the alligator required some extra precautions.
:To get the alligator out, Durcinka first put a control-stick around the reptile's neck.
:"And then I just grabbed him by the hind end and carried him out the door," he said.
:The man who was keeping the animals was not at home at the time, but relatives who were home attempted to contact him by phone, according to Durcinka.
:Photo: An alligator confiscated from a Mishawaka home Friday rests inside a tub at the St. Joseph County Humane Society while staffers prepare more comfortable accommodations. (Bryon Coppens)
: "He was at another pet store," Durcinka said.
:The Humane Society believes that in addition to harboring the alligator, pythons and tortoise, the man was also breeding and selling the pit bulls, eight of which are puppies.
:It wasn't the first time the Humane Society visited the home.
:Durcinka said a 1-foot-long alligator was confiscated from the same residence last year, but the person keeping it claimed not to know an alligator is not allowed as a pet in St. Joseph County.
:The Humane Society got a tip Thursday that another, larger alligator had moved in.
:Durcinka said he would like to see a citation issued this time around because the man keeping the alligator knowingly violated the law. The city of Mishawaka would issue the citation if one is issued.
:"It wasn't something that showed up at the house and he let him in," Durcinka said.
:Depending on how the legal aspect plays out, the alligator may be placed in a zoo.
:In the meantime, the alligator will be housed in the Humane Society's "hot room," where the temperature is kept above 80 degrees. It will also have a shallow pool at the society's Grape Road facility to enjoy as well as a place where it may "sun" itself under the heat lamps.
:Durcinka said no one should bother to inquire about viewing or adopting the alligator, pythons or tortoise. The pythons will likely end up with a rescue service, which would find a place for the animals, and the tortoise eventually will be released.
:(Photos at URL link)
The 'HUMANE?' society is going to release a tropical tortoise into the Northern climes of Indiana. Brilliant.