Alligator stops traffic on South Florida road

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. — Why did the alligator cross a South Florida road on Saturday? Because he wanted to.

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In a Facebook post, the Port St. Lucie Police Department said an alligator measuring 10 feet, 4 inches long stopped traffic briefly.

“This might be the first time that an alligator has caused a traffic jam in Port St. Lucie,” the department wrote in its post.

Port St. Lucie, located two hours north of Miami, is a city that was carved out of a swamp by the General Development Corporation during the 1980s. Presumably, alligators were plentiful in the area, but the reptiles tend to stay out of traffic.

According to the Facebook post, the alligator was safely relocated after members of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission directed traffic away from the reptile.

That gator was lucky. According to the Tampa Bay Times, many of the thousands of alligators reported as a nuisance in Florida are killed for their meat and hide -- regardless of whether the animal threatened a person or pet.

Florida’s Statewide Nuisance Alligator Program has contracts with trappers statewide to remove the reptiles.

At least for now, the roving alligator is swimming in a pond, lake or canal somewhere in the state.