Alligator traps in The Villages neighborhood concerns residents

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SUMTER COUNTY, Fla. - Residents in a neighborhood in The Villages are concerned after trappers showed up and set alligator traps in a lake near their homes.

Signs were posted about the alligator traps and the actual traps have pieces of meat hanging off to lure the animals.

"We've been here eight years and nothing like this has ever happened. I tried to find out and no one seems to know anything,” said resident Jody Whyman.

Whyman and others want to know why the traps were set in the lake at the The Village of Bridgeport at Lake Sumter community.

"One day they were clearing out the brush here, and the next day these traps were set,” resident Jim Paterson said.

Residents said they believe about a half dozen alligators call the lake home and they said they see the animals all the time.

"I see them swimming up and down the canal. They go back and forth, and sun on the banks,” Paterson said.

Channel 9’s Myrt Price went to the lake and saw the meat was missing form some of the traps.

Neighbors said trappers told them once the alligators are caught, they will be killed.

Residents said they think the animals should be left alone.

“We enjoy them. They’re part of the landscape, just like the birds and everything else,” Whyman said.

It’s the same lake where a man wrestled with an alligator to save his dog’s life.

Officials told Price it’s mating season for alligators and the traps are meant to keep residents safe.