LIVINGSTON PARISH, La. (BRPROUD) – Officials with Livingston Parish Fire Protection District #2 are urging boaters not to feed alligators.
The warning was issued on the same day a six-year-old boy was reportedly bitten by an alligator while with his family on Lake Maurepas.
According to The Advocate, the incident occurred Sunday (July 10) afternoon while the boy, Gavin, and his parents were near a sandbar on the part of the lake that is located in Livingston Parish.
The news outlet says Gavin was bitten in the ankle while he was playing in the water on a water mat, which is similar to a floating water trampoline. The little boy immediately cried out for help, saying he’d been bitten.
His mother, Tiffany, told The Advocate that her husband, Brett, pulled Gavin from the water and as he was doing so, she saw the gator headed towards her husband.
Tiffany said the animal was above the water and about four feet in length.
Once everyone was safely in the boat, the family called 911 and EMS personnel with Livingston Parish Fire Protection District #2 met them on the shore where they checked Gavin’s condition.
Shortly thereafter, Tiffany and Brett took Gavin to a local hospital for additional treatment.
Tiffany told reporters Gavin is doing well, and she added that she believes the incident was the result of people feeding the alligators.
Along those lines, officials with Livingston Parish Fire Protection District #2 posted the following warning to their official Facebook page: “Stop feeding the gators!!! Too many folks have been feeding the gators. This has made them begin approaching boats and swimmers, looking for a handout!!”