A call to the state Department of Environmental Conservation led wildlife officials to two types of alligators and more than 20 turtles living in a living room of an area home in unsanitary conditions.
The animals were discovered after Environment Conservation Officer Zachary Crain received a call notifying him of two crocodilians, also known as caimans, and approximately 20 turtles at a private residence in the town of Wappingers Falls, the department said.
During the initial visit and permit compliance check at the residence, Crain found a miniature Caiman, a small-type reptile similar to an alligator, but with wider and shorter heads and their teeth are longer and narrower, was being kept in a litter box and a 5½-foot American Alligator was cramped in an oversized metal dog crate, DEC said.
In addition to the insufficient enclosures, the owner was in possession of native box turtles and painted turtles without the required permits.
On Saturday, June 22, environmental officers along with employees from Friends of the Feathered and Furry Wildlife Center removed the animals from the home, the DEC said.
The animals were brought to the center where they will be cared for until a permanent placement can be found.
The owner was given tickets for unlawful possession of wildlife and for violating conditions of a DEC permit.
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