A 2-foot-long alligator was being relocated from a residence to a wildlife sanctuary Tuesday because its owner lacked a license to keep it at home, officials said Wednesday.
The reptile, which was purchased outside of New York State, was turned over to the Suffolk County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and state Department of Environmental Conservation on Tuesday, said Chief Roy Gross of the Suffolk County SPCA.
"Alligators do not make good pets, are a danger to the public, and are illegal to own without a license,” Gross said in a news release about the turnover.
He added that the alligator will be sent to a wildlife sanctuary and cautioned area residents not to touch or approach alligators found in the wild.
Officials urged anyone who spots an abandoned reptile to call the Suffolk County SPCA at 631-382-7722 or the state Department of Environmental Conservation at 631-444-0250. All calls will be kept confidential.