Unwanted guest arrives at Hattiesburg's Duncan Lake Park - WDAM - TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports

Unwanted guest arrives at Hattiesburg's Duncan Lake Park

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Residents visiting Hattiesburg's Duncan lake park may be surprised to see a new visitor lurking around the lake.

"Beware of alligator." These signs now encircle the park, warning of the new resident calling the area home.

The six to seven foot gator was first spotted by fisherman around two weeks ago. State officials believe high water levels, caused by Hurricane Isaac, may have allowed the gator to enter the lake from the Leaf River.

"We have posted some beware of the alligator signs, just to let the public know we have identified an alligator here," said Ann Jones, General Manager of Parks and Recreation for the City of Hattiesburg.

"As far as any special precautions, no. We don't allow swimming in the lake. We don't allow boats in the lake. Anyway, not just pertaining to the alligator. If people want to come out, we encourage them to come out and use the walking trail, the pavilions, and just enjoy the park."

Considered a "nuisance gator", the goal is to now relocate the animal to a location away from the public. The Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks, has already set-up traps around the lake.

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