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Surprise House Guest Found in Lake Houston Home Following Hurricane Harvey

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Unexpectedly turning up in a home in Houston on Friday, September 1, a rather large alligator will soon be taken back to his natural habitat according to a recent report by NBC DFW. The surprise house guest found its way into the Lake Houston house in the flooding aftermath that resulted from Hurricane Harvey. The area, having received 48 inches of rain in some places, where the annual rainfall is 49.77 inches, clearly has been hard-hit, and the displacement or unexpected discovery of such creatures as this is bound to occur more than once in the ensuing recovery and cleanup process.

Surprise House Guest Found in Lake Houston Home Following Hurricane Harvey

Photo: Facebook/Los Angeles Times

Discovered under a table in the home by Harris County deputies, it’s believed the alligator made its way into the home via a flood opening, and once the waters receded it was, in effect, trapped. As humans weren’t the only ones displaced during this natural disaster, Texas Parks and Wildlife officials have issued a notice that alligators would likely be found in “areas where they aren’t normally observed” after the storm and advised people to keep their distance.

Surprise House Guest Found in Lake Houston Home Following Hurricane Harvey

Photo: Facebook/Sweetwater Fishing TV

The Guardian connected with Chris Stephens of Gator-Squad in Houston, who identified that ‘gators aren’t able to withstand fast-moving flood waters for great periods, and are often forced to seek higher ground to survive. “Their ponds and creeks are overwhelmed with water, so they’re finding themselves in unfamiliar neighborhoods surrounded by people and they don’t have much of a choice,” he explained. He noted that, in general, when the flood waters recede, the alligators will return to their natural habitats, but added, “The rules of co-existence break down during a flood, so right now our job is to keep the balance between them and the people, keep everybody getting along, but we can’t leave them all alone, like the one that was found in the house.” Should you encounter an unwelcome guest such as this in the coming weeks of storm cleanup, you’re asked to remain calm, try to remember animal behaviors (a list of which are provided here), and contact the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department for next steps.

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