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2 small alligators removed from Eastpointe, sent to sanctuary

James David Dickson
The Detroit News

Eastpointe — See you later, alligators.

Two alligators were evicted from their home in a Macomb County suburb on Tuesday and relocated to a place city officials felt was more appropriate — an alligator sanctuary in Calhoun County — Eastpointe Police Department said on its Facebook page.

The gators were removed, the post explained, because the city bans exotic animals. 

"Anything that Tony Montana would want is probably prohibited in Eastpointe," police explained. "No Boa Constrictors. No Tigers. No Alligators. A big thank you to the Alligator Sanctuary in Athens, MI for taking these often misunderstood creatures off our hands."

Animal control officer Brian Pylar could not immediately be reached Wednesday, but the post jokes that he "risked life and limb" capturing the two reptiles, who were pictured with their mouths forced shut by green bands. 

Michigan Humane Society's statewide response team received a tip that there was one alligator in Eastpointe, said spokeswoman Anna Chrisman. But when authorities arrived, there were two. 

The Alligator Sanctuary in Athens, is the gators' new home. The sanctuary's website says it is home to hundreds of reptiles, who remain on site rather than being sold, adopted or traded. 

David Critchlow, 62, owner of the sanctuary, told The News that it has some 150 crocodilians on site, and takes in roughly 20 to 30 per year. Thus far in 2019 it's taken in 10, including the two American alligators from Eastpointe. There are also a "handful" of large tortoises on the three-acre site.

The sanctuary is open to the public, and most visitors of most ages are charged a $9.95 fee. 

"The public is taking care of our animals for us," Critchlow said.

The sanctuary has taken in animals from about 20 states in its 11-year history, he said. Most of the crocodilians it brings in have not been abused, but were merely "out of place" where they were.

"We provide a comfortable home and care for these animals for the rest of their lives," its website says.