Villagers left bemused after rogue alligator appears in pond

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A village has been left bemused over rogue wildlife in the local pond following the mysterious appearance of an alligator
A village has been left bemused over rogue wildlife in the local pond following the mysterious appearance of an alligator

Story and video from SWNS

A village has been left bemused over rogue wildlife in the local pond following the mysterious appearance of an 'alligator.'

The miniature 'predator' has been floating in the water in Barton, Cambs., since just before Christmas, with its jaws gaping wide and its 'fierce' pointy teeth bared.

But the tiny alligator certainly hasn't fazed the other wildlife that frequents the pond - and has become the talking point of the residents of Barton, which has a population of just 850 people.

The alligator is the latest in a series of bizarre animal ornaments that have appeared in or around the pond over the last couple of years.

Previous installations have included an owl and a pussycat, a rubber duck, and even a miniature shark.

Sarah Pitchford, 56, chairman of Barton Parish Council, said: "We're never really sure who puts these things by the pond.

"I suspect it is the same individual responsible for all of them, but I wouldn't like to say who that individual is as I cannot be sure.

"It's all just a bit of fun. The pond is a focal point in the village, so lots of people gather round here or often walk past it - so it gets noticed and enjoyed.

"The other ornaments that have appeared before have all had a bit of a theme to them -we had the owl and the pussycat first, and then a rubber duck appeared on the pond.

"But now we've got the alligator - which I think was just put in there to bring a bit of humour and lift people's spirits during the lockdown.

"It just makes the village a little bit more lively."

Sarah said that the mystery ornament 'artist' first surfaced two years ago - after a large chestnut tree beside the pond got chopped down.

She said: "There was some discussion about what to do with the tree stump that was left behind - whether we should turn it into an art piece, or something.

"But in the end, it got left as a stump, and wild plants started to grow over it.

"Then one day, an owl ornament appeared on top of it. And before we knew it, a pussycat appeared next to that, and then a little sailing boat on the pond.

"Since then, we've had a little rubber duck and a shark appear on the water, too.

"All the other installations have been taken away or broken over time - but the owl has remained a permanent fixture on the tree trunk. It hasn't even been blown around.

"When I first saw the alligator just before Christmas, I thought, what on earth is that? I could only see the back of its head.

"I think someone put it in to add humour. It doesn't seem to bother the herons or the ducks that appear on the pond, they just watch it with interest.

"It just makes the pond a little hub of activity. Who knows what will appear next?"