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Dead alligators found with tails missing
from Staff Reports - NEWS
August 31, 2017 -

Dead Alligators have been found in South Mississippi missing their tails. 

"I had an overnight trip," said Kathy Wilkinson of Eco-Tours of South Mississippi. "I had a couple from Louisiana with me. We had gone out to see the sunset, but it was too cloudy."

On her return trip she saw something she hoped she'd never see again — a dead alligator with its tail cut off, which Wilkinson believes was taken for the meat.

"I don't think he was 4 feet long," Wilkinson said. "That's pretty shocking. They (customers) want to see gators, but not dead and mutilated."

Wilkinson saw an increase in dead alligators that appeared to have been illegally killed in 2015 and 2014, but last year saw none. Now the suspected illegal killing is back, if it ever went away.

Benny McCoy of McCoy's River and Marsh Tours said he thinks the problem is growing in the area.

"The last dead one I saw was about 5 or 6 feet and had a rope around its head," McCoy said. "I found one two weeks prior to that on the West River around Poticaw that had its tail cut off.

"I think I've seen probably a total of four floating this year. One of them was pretty good-sized. It was about 11 feet. All of them appeared to have been poached. Their tails were missing. I've heard about more, but four is what I've seen. For some reason, I don't know why, it's become more prominent. People just think they can go out and kill an alligator."

To report the illegal killing of an alligator or any other wildlife in Mississippi, call 1-800-BE-SMART.

McCoy can be reached at and Wilkinson at


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