Public Safety Blotter Articles

Alligator Captured on Southside

Date: May 18, 2019
Incident Type: Alligator Capture
Location: Southside Riverfront Park

Pittsburgh Public Safety and the Fish and Boat Commission captured an alligator at the Southside Riverfront Park.

A family that was fishing along the banks of the Monongahela River saw the alligator sunning itself on a riverside trail and called 911 around 1:15 p.m. Pittsburgh Bureau of Animal Care & Control officers, Pittsburgh Bureau of Police Zone 3 officers, and a conservation officer from the Fish and Boat Commission responded.

They found an alligator.

It was about three feet long and weighed around 10 pounds.

The alligator tried to hide from the officers under a fallen tree, which rendered the officers’ catch poles and tongs (a grabbing device) ineffective.

Officers dug away at the soil to create an opening and around 2:15 p.m. captured the alligator with their hands. They used a nylon strip to tie the mouth closed and placed the alligator in a crate.

Animal Care & Control officers prepared to take the alligator to Humane Animal Rescue in the East End, but their trip to the shelter was delayed when they received a report of a goat on Baum Boulevard. Officers Karen Jones and Dina Serpa went to Baum and found an out-of-town visitor who had brought a pet pygmy goat from Forest Hills to Pittsburgh. The goat was secured and the officers went to Humane Animal Rescue.

Officers Jones and Serpa said the alligator was likely a pet that someone released into the wild. The alligator was slightly overweight, which leads the officers to suspect that the alligator was eating well by the banks of the Monongahela.

The alligator was not injured and appeared healthy. It will stay at Humane Animal Rescue until a shelter or refuge is identified for relocation.

Alligators are not common to Pittsburgh. They require a warm climate and would not survive winter here.


Reporting PIO:
Chris Togneri