A baby alligator, two pythons measuring more than two metres in length and a chameleon were among the more unusual animals seized during a police raid on a house in Bingara Avenue, Dapto.
Lake Illawarra police attended the property after receiving a tip-off from the NSW Department of Primary Industries.
About 4.30pm on Wednesday, police arrived at the property and discovered the animals being kept inside a shed in the backyard.
As well as DPI officers, National Parks and Wildlife officers and WIRES volunteers were called to help remove the animals.
Other reptiles seized included two corn snakes and a slider turtle.
The 24-year-old owner has not been charged by police, however he is likely to face penalties for keeping the animals without a permit.
Lake Illawarra Inspector Paul Allman said all the animals were in good condition, and it appeared as though the owner had been hand feeding many of them.
‘‘The owner of the animals was very cooperative,’’ Insp Allman said.
‘‘They were well maintained in a proper set up.’’
He said the owner had indicated he would apply to eventually repossess the animals.
‘‘He’s hoping for their return pending an application to the authorities,’’ Insp Allman said.
Insp Allman said the event served as a reminder to people to ensure they had the legal right to keep exotic animals before purchasing them.
He said it was the first time he had come across anyone keeping an alligator in the Illawarra.
Police found and seized the following exotic animals:
- 1 x 18-inch Alligator
- 1x Veiled Chameleons
- 2 x Columbian Red Tail Boa Constrictors
- 2 x Slider turtles
- 3 x Corn snakes.
They also allegedly found and seized the following native animals:
- 2 x Bearded Dragons
- 1 x Netted Dragon
- 2 x Ridge Tailed Monitors
- 1 x Lace Monitor
- 1 x Darwin Carpet Snake
- 8 x Geckos (mixture of native & exotic species)