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6 alligators found shot to death in Southwest Florida

Posted at 10:01 AM, Jun 20, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-20 10:02:56-04

COLLIER COUNTY, Fla. — WPTV is committed to Protecting Paradise. We are focused on environmental issues with a goal of helping to bring awareness to existing problems and search for workable solutions. Have a story idea? Email us at paradise@wptv.com

The Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission is investigating after six alligators were found shot to death in Southwest Florida.

"It's ridiculous. I mean I don't know what society is coming to ... why kill an animal that's not bothering you and is where it needs to be?"

For alligator trapper Ray Simonsen Sr., they are a treasure.

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"Any hunter knows that you don't kill something you're not going to harvest. It's just a waste of natural resources and they're protected. Gators are protected," said Simonsen Sr. "For people to do this to our wildlife and or domestic animals, what's next?"

FWC says if someone is found they will be prosecuted.

"I mean just to senselessly kill wildlife and or domestic animals. I hope when they catch them, which they will, that they throw the book at them," said Simonsen Sr.

FWC confirmed the gators were shot.

Alligator hunting season is from Aug. 15 to Nov. 1.

Hunters must apply for a permit by June 24 to legally hunt alligators this year.