Oct. 14 (UPI) -- A young alligator spotted swimming loose in a Maryland pond was captured in a trap by local authorities and will be kept warm for the winter at a local zoo.
The Carroll Manor Fire Company said state officials were contacted about the alligator spotted swimming last week in a private pond south of Adamstown, and the ABC All Wildlife Removal service set traps for the reptile in the area.
The wildlife trappers said a trap baited with a dead groundhog was successful in capturing the alligator Saturday. They said the alligator's life would likely have been endangered by dropping temperatures if it had remained in the pond much longer.
Frederick County Animal Control took the gator to the Catoctin Zoo and Wildlife Preserve, where it was examined by veterinarians and given a new habitat.
Authorities said they think the alligator was a pet that escaped or was abandoned by its owner. Alligators and similar reptiles are illegal to keep in Maryland without proper permits.