Alligator Spotted Near North Carolina Marine Barracks Has Been Fed by Humans

Zachary Stieber
By Zachary Stieber
July 21, 2018US News
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Alligator Spotted Near North Carolina Marine Barracks Has Been Fed by Humans
Alligator in the pond directly behind Marine Corps Air Station New River in Jacksonville on July 18, 2018. (Marine Corps Air Station New River/Facebook)

An alligator spotted near a Marine Corps barracks in North Carolina has been fed by humans, according to officials.

The gator can be seen in a video posted to the Facebook page of Marine Corps Air Station New River in Jacksonville moving quickly toward a videographer as he or she throws blades of grass toward it on July 18.

“Unfortunately, people have been actively feeding this alligator, which is why it moved toward the camera when a piece of grass was thrown its way,” Marine Corps Air Station New River stated.

“Alligators are usually shy and secretive, but lose their fear of people and begin to associate them with food when humans toss food their way. In addition to being illegal, feeding an alligator is dangerous and creates a safety issue if they become habituated to being fed by humans,” the officials added.

The gator apparently moved to another location the next day.

Wildlife personnel at New River regularly monitor the bodies of water near the base, and detected the gator directly behind the barracks, Kirk Kropinack, director of the air station’s installation and environment department, told Military.com.

He said the gator measures 5 to 6 feet.

“It was tracking these officials as they approached the pond and started swimming toward them,” Kropinack said. “It is very likely that the alligator has been fed in the past by people visiting the pond.”

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