LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – At least 226 nuisance alligators have been trapped and removed from Walt Disney World property since a toddler was killed by an alligator at a Disney resort nearly five years ago, according to a report from ClickonOrlando.com.
Lane Thomas Graves, 2, was snatched and dragged into a lagoon from a beach outside Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort in June of 2016.
In the eight years before his death, wildlife trappers removed an average of 23 alligators a year from Disney property, but after the attack, substantially more alligators have been removed each year, state records show.
- 2016: 83 alligators removed
- 2017: 57 alligators removed
- 2018: 33 alligators removed
- 2019: 33 alligators removed
- 2020: 46 alligators removed
“In keeping with our strong commitment to safety, we continue to reinforce procedures related to reporting sightings and interactions with wildlife, and work closely with Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission to remove or relocate certain wildlife from our property in accordance with state regulations,” a Walt Disney World spokesperson told ClickonOrlando.
The gators are removed through the Statewide Nuisance Alligator Program. Some of the reptiles are sold alive to alligator farms, animal exhibits or zoos but most nuisance alligators are euthanized, ClickonOrlando reports.
Disney World has special permits that allow the company to contract with trappers directly to remove nuisance alligators and then report to FWC.
Following Graves’ death, Disney took measures to prevent visitors from getting close to the resort’s lakes and added signs to warn guests about alligators and snakes.
According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, Florida has about 1.3 million alligators.
Click here to read ClickonOrlando’s story.