Tracks found near La Mairena have confirmed the reported sighting of a large reptile in the area known as Majada Vieja de Mijas last month. The Guardia Civil’s nature protection unit, Seprona, has said that the markings located at the edge of a lake belong to a two-metre-long alligator that could weigh around 70 kilos.
The reptile was spotted and reported by a local resident at the end of February. Last week Seprona officers, accompanied by Enrique Prieto, the manager of the Cocodrilos Park in Torremolinos, found three footprints in the dry mud on the edge of the lake. An expert said that the “very clear” tracks were made by two back feet and a left front foot, showing that an alligator aged between 12 and 18 years had walked through the area.
While the land in question is private, there is a dirt track used by many drivers travelling between La Mairena and La Cala de Mijas, on the Costa del Sol. Residents have pointed out that many families bathe or take their canoes out onto the lagoon in the summer.
During the colder weather the animal’s need to feed is minimal, which could explain why no remains of other animals caught as prey have been found in the area.
Now in the spring though, when temperatures reach around 23 degrees alligators “start to look for food”. That will be when there is more chance for the Guardia Civil officers to capture the alligator. If it has not been located by May or June the park manager considers that they may have to prohibit access to the water area.