SEPRONA officers hunting for the ‘La Cala Croc’ have found three footprints that experts believe belong to an enormous alligator.
It comes after Mario Calvente, a gardener from Marbella, said he spotted a ‘giant reptile’ beside a lake near La Cala de Mijas.
Manager of Torremolinos crocodile park, Enrique Prieto, said the claw-shaped prints are unmistakable, adding that he believes the ‘gator is about 2 metres long, weighs in at 70 kilos and is between 12 and 18 years old’.
“In colder weather alligators make a den of mud and don’t eat much, which would explain why no animal remains have been found in the area,” said Prieto.
Seprona officers believe they will have a better chance to capture the reptile when temperatures rise, adding that they will cut off access to the lake if it has not been found by May.
Warning signs have already been put up by Mijas Town Hall and an observation post is being manned from 11am to 4 pm.
Prieto warned locals to be ‘gator-aware’.
“It will probably only attack if it is trodden on or hurt, but if anyone does come across it, the best thing to do is to walk away calmly, without provoking it or trying any acts of bravery.”