Russellville man spots alligator on walking trail


RUSSELLVILLE, Ark. – A local man’s photos of an alligator spotted on a walking trail is getting quite the attention on social media.

Jan Harrison discovered the gator on the Bona Dea walking trail.

He posted the picture on Facebook and it’s been shared thousands of times.

Harrison is a fan of the Bona Dea walking trail in Russellville.

“It’s just a fantastic facility,” Harrison said.

You never know what you might see along the way.

“Ducks, geese, squirrels, snakes and even alligators,” he added.

Gators are common in the Natural State.

“I’ve seen them before on the water,” Harrison said.

As Harrison was walking on the trail Tuesday.

“I was kind of keeping my eyes open,” he explained.

He came across an alligator.

“It was right in front of me. Obviously, I stopped and got my phone out,” Harrison continued.

He quickly snapped a picture.

“My hand was shaking. He was probably between 7 and 8 feet long,” Harrison said.

He fled for safety with his dog Junie May.

“I had to walk an extra mile to get back here. I didn’t give her much of a chance. I had a real close leash on her,” he said.

The picture was shared over a thousand times on Facebook.

“I think it’s crazy! Here today and gone tomorrow, so I’ll enjoy that,” Harrison said.

Not everyone enjoys the trail said they’d enjoy the sight of an alligator.

“I try not to think about it because this is my only option to run out here,” said Davonne Carnathan. “Pray I never run into one.”

But as long as Jan Harrison is safe, he says he won’t disturb the gator.

“They have a place here,” he said.

The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission says most alligators are in South Arkansas, but it’s not unusual to find them in other places.

Officials say if you see a gator, stay away and most importantly don’t feed them.

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