TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — An 85-year-old woman has been killed in an alligator attack in northern St. Lucie County, WPTV reports.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission responded to reports of an alligator bite incident Monday at a 55-plus living community near Fort Pierce.
They said a woman, identified only as a St. Lucie County resident, 85, died. The woman’s body was recovered from the scene.
Witnesses told WPTV the woman was walking her dog when the alligator approached her and grabbed it. She tried to wrestle her dog away from the alligator and was bit by the reptile. Her dog survived.
“The gator, especially in the urban areas, they can be anywhere and they are everywhere,” said Phil Walters of GatorGuides.com.
“Alligators are at their historic highs. They’re all over the place. That’s any body of water, including swimming pools. Look twice before you jump in,” he added.
Wildlife officials said a trapper arrived to capture the alligator. A video shows them removing the 11-foot reptile from the scene.
“Our thoughts and deepest sympathies are with the family and friends of the victim,” the FWC said in a statement.
Although alligator attacks are rare, the reptiles can still pose a threat to people, pets and property. If you see an alligator, officials say you should keep your distance and not feed it. To report a nuisance alligator, call the FWC’s toll-free hotline at 866-392-4286.