ATLANTA -- An eight-foot long alligator has been spotted several times recently in the Chattahoochee River.
Yes, you read that right.
According to National Park Service officials at the Chattahoochee
River National Recreation Area, the gator has been spotted several times
over the past six years. They said it has apparently found a
comfortable spot in the swampy area near Cochran Shoals Park, not far
from Interstate 285 and Interstate North Parkway.
They said they think the alligator is the same as the six-foot
gator that was seen in the area in 2007. The alligator seen most
recently is estimated at about eight feet in length.
Curiously, alligators are not known to be able to withstand the
winters in north Georgia, and as such, are not ordinarily found this far
north. Apparently, officials said, the gator has found an area where it
can burrow and hide during the winter months.
National Park Service officials said that the alligator tends to
remain out of the Chattahoochee River itself, as the waters there are
generally colder than what that species of alligator normally prefers.
National Park Service officials said that the alligator shies away
from contact with people, and that as long as that trend continues, they
will leave it alone and not worry about trapping and removing it. The
Park Service has posted signs in the area, advising park patrons to keep
their animals on a leash, and to avoid the alligator if they see it.