Photo: Cory Klocek / Facebook
A Minnesota man who was following a big buck on the opening weekend of the deer hunting season ended up finding another award for his collection when he came across a 3ft alligator.
Cory Klocek was hunting on farmland in East Bethel on Saturday, about 40 miles north of Minneapolis, when he shot a shotgun in what he described on Facebook as a “handsome 10-point buck.” reported the Minneapolis Star Tribune. Around this time, he rounded a pond and spotted the alligator.
“I have no idea how it got there, or why,” Klocek wrote. “I guess someone got him as a pet and released him when he got too big.
Klocek, 35, contacted a local conservation officer from the state’s Department of Natural Resources and got the go-ahead to shoot the alligator as well. He recovered a .22 caliber handgun and returned to the pond.
“It’s not until 2020 that you can go out … for the start of deer season in Minnesota and shoot an alligator,” Klocek said Monday in an interview. “I’m always at a loss for words. ”
Department of Natural Resources spokesman Joe Albert confirmed that Klocek had obtained the green light from his agency to eliminate the reptile because he had “no special protection”.
Klocek said he intends to pair the male and the alligator for a “fun taxidermy piece.”