A man was taken to the hospital after he was attacked by a 9-foot alligator Monday at a Lakeland community, according to reports.
The 85-year-old man was bitten on the foot while near a pond at the 55-and-over community of Cypress Lakes, FOX 13 reported.
He was taken to Lakeland Regional Medical Center, but the extent of his injuries were not known Monday, according to ABC Action News.
The Cypress Lakes community posted about the incident on Facebook, saying “We were informed the resident will be OK; the removal of the gator is in process.”
Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officials told WFLA News Channel 8 the 9-foot alligator was captured by trappers. Spokeswoman Ashley Tyer told reporters they were “able to determine it was the correct alligator.”
The community’s Facebook post noted the man was trying to “flush out birds” in the area when he was attacked by the alligator.
The post also reminded residents of the community about coexisting with Florida wildlife and tips on safety around alligators.
“A gator attack is rare. In these instances, we do take abundance of caution and remove the alligator,” Tyer told Spectrum Bay News 9.
Edward Donnelly, a landscaper working nearby when the incident occurred, told Bay News 9 the man’s foot was “pretty gruesome.”
“He said the birds were making a mess in his backyard,” Donnelly told reporters. “He said next thing you knew he saw something come up, bit him and was trying to pull him down.”
The community is no stranger to alligators, something Jane Rickel told WFLA she knew after living the Cypress Lakes for years.
“There isn’t a pond in here that doesn’t have alligators,” Rickel told ABC Action News.