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Third Green Warning: Cryptid Reptile Loose

Posted by: Loren Coleman on July 17th, 2008

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The lay of the land near Stivers Lagoon. Watch out for the water hazards on the nearby golf course.

Another report of a huge, unidentified reptile? Let’s put the latest sightings in their NoCal context.

The reptile spotted by two people at a Fremont, California, golf course last week remains at large, and there are no plans to look for it again unless someone else sees it, officials said.

A week after initially being alerted to a supposed 3-foot-long reptile – possibly an abandoned illegal pet caiman – in the water near the third green at Fremont Park Golf Center, animal control officials said there were no additional sightings over the weekend. At this point, the plan is to wait until someone else spots it, said Sgt. Jon Dauzat, the Fremont police officer in charge of the Tri-City Animal Shelter. (Or a golfer turns up missing after shooting an eagle?)

Sgt. Dauzat earlier had announced that he’d likely use a fishing pole and half a chicken breast to catch the reptile. Dauzat, who heads the Tri-City Animal Control, called off all efforts last Thursday amid hoards of onlookers and a reported third sighting of a caiman at a different body of water earlier in the week.

A diver hired to pluck golf balls out of a vast pond at the Stevenson Place golf course claims he came face to face with the reptile on July 8, 2008. And a day later the general manager of the facility said he saw some about 3 feet long surface and “turn over like a big fish.”

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Those sightings came just three days after patrons at nearby Central Park spotted a similar looking reptile near Stivers Lagoon, which is at the south end of the park. (Stivers Lagoon is one of the last remnants of wild marshland where the Ohlone Indians used to come to collect their reeds for basket making.)

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There is a creek that runs through the park and connects the lagoon and the golf course, Dauzat said.

There have not been any sightings since July 9, and neither Dauzat nor any of his employees have independently confirmed the sighting.

Officials have armed themselves with heavy-duty fishing equipment and are ready to catch it should there be another sighting at the golf course.

“I’m not going to go out there and just fish,” the sergeant said. “I wish I could, but I can’t.”

In Mysterious America, looking at the northern California file, I mention the eight-foot-long alligator sightings in East Bay Regional Park’s Lafayette Lake for October 1975, the Tulare Lake six-footer alligator sightings of 1930, and the series of ‘gator sightings for Folsom Lake from 1957-1958. Such incidents have long kept local residents jumpy.

Other sources: “Reptile still on the loose in Fremont,” by Ben Aguirre Jr., Mercury News, July 16, 2008. “Search for caiman in Fremont suspended,” by Ben Aguirre Jr., The Argus, July 10, 2008.

About Loren Coleman
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013.


9 Responses to “Third Green Warning: Cryptid Reptile Loose”

  1. Lightning Orb responds:

    I guess crocodilians are becoming very popular pets – or make that were becoming very popular pets

  2. Richard888 responds:

    A diver’s life is put to risk because of an irresponsible owner of a pet.

  3. steele79 responds:

    I know some people like reptiles as pets, but I think its time to just outright ban them. Look at the damage pythons are doing in the everglades and now this stuff. Just ridiculou.

  4. Andrew Minnesota responds:

    If we ban them think of how many more will simply be released, plus people who really want them will still get them. We already know people will purchase exotic pets without the proper permits and they either get loose or are let go. I don’t think banning would solve anything, more likely just make the situation worse. About the only thing to do is try and catch then animals and if they are lucky enough to find out who the owner was slap them with a big fine or some jail time, a couple well publicized and successful cases of illegal pet owners or people release exotics might be a deterrent to some people who are thinking of purchasing one. But like I said the people who really want them will get them one way or another and unfortunately the problem will never be completely solved.

  5. StinkFoot responds:

    lol, reminds me of Happy Gilmore.

  6. cryptidsrus responds:

    That’s funny, StinkFoot.

    We can have him go over to the pond and yell:

    “What would it take for you to move?”

    Also in the spirit of the movie, maybe get Bob Barker to wrestle it out of the pond and knock it unconscious. Bob would then proceed to give a speech in front of Tv cameras reminding us of the need to have our pets spayed or neutered. Because we know that if we don’t, him and PETA will firebomb our house.

    BTW, I actually like Bob.

    Now, to be serious…

    We don’t need to ban anything. Like Andrew Minnesotta pointed out, all we need to do is slap the people who let pets go with high fines and follow it through. There are countless responsible exotic animal owners who follow the rules and walk the straight-and-narrow path on this. No need to have a few irresposible yahoos cause problems for the rest.

  7. Dj Plasmic Nebula responds:

    if it’s a caiman then why call it Cryptid reptile?

  8. Loren Coleman responds:

    It is not an alligator because all we have are sightings, no body, no verification of what this really is.

    It could be a crocodile, a monitor lizard, a toy gator float, or imagination, in addition to about a dozen other things.

    It is a cryptid.

  9. mystery_man responds:

    Ah man, and I was just in visiting the Bay Area recently. This would have been a place to check out as it is right near my hometown.

    Banning exotic animals is not going to do the job. Strict laws and enforcement of those laws is the the way to go. As has already been said, there are plenty of responsible pet owners out there. I myself at one time owned a boa constrictor and a Burmese python. Who is going to take care of managing all of those suddenly illegal pets in the event of a ban? It is a lot more complicated than that. I surmise that most people would just be rid of them in their nearest wilderness area, which would be an invasive species nightmare.



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