Swimming alligator is captured and released

Reported by Gavin Johnson - bio|email

TOPSAIL BEACH, NC (WECT) - An alligator that disrupted swimmers at Topsail Beach Wednesday has been captured and released into an area that is safer for it and humans.

The gator caused a lot of commotion when he was spotted swimming in the surf. Click here to watch more of the exclusive video.

Beach visitors saw the alligator just after 4:00pm near Anderson Blvd. Police showed up to clear the water, while officers and firefighters attempted unsuccessfully to remove the alligator using ropes and netting.

Thursday morning around 4:00, a Topsail police officer spotted the six-foot alligator in a residental area at the intersection of South Anderson Boulevard and Empie Avenue.

The gator was released at the Holly Shelter gamelands in Pender County.

A wildlife officer tells WECT that although alligators aren't spotted at beaches often, it's not unusual to see them in the water.

Similar reports of alligator sightings in the area have been circulating for a week from North Topsail to Surf City, and now Topsail Beach.

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