The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

AP story section

December 11, 2013

Officials seek sanctuary for Iowa alligator

WATERLOO — Animal control officials in the Iowa city of Waterloo are seeking a new home for a baby alligator named Chompey.

A resident of the eastern Iowa city of about 68,000 people bought the alligator after spotting an online advertisement, but he later learned state law does not allow people to keep alligators or other exotic animals, The Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier reported Monday.

The resident turned the gator in to animal control officials, who kept the creature in an aquarium while figuring out what to do with it. Then the gator started snapping and making noises.

“He was really kind of cute, but he was also kind of naughty,” said Maria Tiller, Waterloo’s code enforcement forewoman. “I didn’t want him in my office anymore.”

The alligator was moved to the Pawsitive Pet Care, a veterinary center, where staffed dubbed the animal “Chompey.” The alligator then was sent to a herpetologist in Des Moines, where the animal’s being held in quarantine while staff seek a sanctuary in a warmer climate for Chompey.

Josh Colvin, who heads animal control for Animal Rescue of Iowa, said alligator reports have dropped since the state ban on exotic animals was approved in 2007. Still, he said, people occasionally drop off gators.

“They just don’t realize they are going to grow up and get big,” Colvin said. “The unfortunate part is that people don’t think it through, and then animal control has to pick up the pieces.”

Iowa law also bans residents from owning lions, tigers, cougars, leopards, ocelots, elephants, bears, monkeys, crocodiles and some snakes. Exceptions can be made for zoos, circuses, fairs, animal shelters, veterinarians and researchers.

 

 

1
Text Only
AP story section
  • State to reopen Juvenile Home DES MOINES -- A district court judge on Wednesday ordered the state to reopen the Iowa Juvenile Home, telling Gov. Terry Branstad he cannot unilaterally change a law approved by the state Legislature. Judge Scott Rosenberg said the home in Toledo was

    February 6, 2014

  • Panel OKs ban on remote abortion pill distribution DES MOINES -- A legislative panel approved a measure Wednesday that would ban the remote distribution of abortion pills, a proposal the bill's sponsor said is intended to delay the procedure and give women more time to change their minds. The subcomm

    February 6, 2014

  • Sioux City gambling group halts local grants SIOUX CITY -- The nonprofit that holds the gambling license for the Argosy Sioux City riverboat casino has voted to temporarily stop sending grants to local charities and government agencies. A legal dispute with the operator of the casino, Penn Nati

    January 15, 2014

  • Davenport pays, apologizes to hearing impaired man DAVENPORT (AP) -- The city of Davenport has issued an unusual apology to a former alderman after a police employee was caught on tape saying that he intentionally knocked softly on the hearing-impaired man's door when responding to a service call. Th

    January 15, 2014

  • Budget Branstad presents budget for next fiscal year DES MOINES -- Gov. Terry Branstad offered a budget proposal Tuesday that includes a tax break for veterans, a tuition freeze for college students and incentives to encourage Internet expansion in rural Iowa, a more modest list of priorities one year

    January 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • Gov. restores more felons' voting rights IOWA CITY (AP) -- Gov. Terry Branstad restored voting rights to more felons in 2013 than the prior two years combined, but thousands of others remain disenfranchised under a 2011 policy change. Data released by the governor's office to The Associated

    January 15, 2014

  • Man fatally shot at Fla. theater over texting WESLEY CHAPEL, Fla. (AP) -- A 71-year-old retired police officer accused of shooting a man dead in a Florida movie theater told authorities that "he was in fear of being attacked" during Monday's confrontation. Curtis Reeves is charged with second-de

    January 15, 2014

  • Iowa Senator: Congress must confirm election board DES MOINES -- An Iowa senator asked a U.S. Senate committee Wednesday to confirm appointees to a federal election commission so a decision can be made about whether Iowa Secretary of State Matt Schultz is properly using money for voter-fraud investig

    January 9, 2014

  • School Discipline Gov't: End overly zealous discipline in schools WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The Obama administration is urging schools to abandon overly zealous discipline policies that civil rights advocates have long said lead to a school-to-prison pipeline that discriminates against minority students. The wide-ranging

    January 9, 2014 1 Photo

  • Governor, lawmakers set modest goals for 2014 DES MOINES -- After reaching bipartisan agreements on several major policy initiatives last year, Gov. Terry Branstad said Wednesday that he is setting more modest expectations for the 2014 legislative session. Speaking at The Associated Press' annua

    January 9, 2014

AP Video
Facebook
National News