TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — New Taipei City Animal Protection Office received a report on Monday (Aug. 7) about an escaped caiman in Sanxia District, caused by heavy rainfall that overflowed the animal's enclosure.
The caiman was reported near a water tower in a special fire lane. Local residents were able to trap the caiman in an upside-down basket as staff from the animal protection bureau arrived.
The owner of the escaped caiman broke the Animal Protection Law, which says all pets must be accompanied by a person over the age of 7 or face a potential fine of NT$3,000-15,0000 (US$90-500), per UDN.
The owner is also being asked to attend a three-hour animal protection seminar at an animal shelter in New Taipei. He said he started raising the animal six months ago.
Spectacled caiman is returned to its owner after a temporary escape. (CNA photo)
The animal requires an environment with sufficient water to completely submerge itself. It is legal to raise spectacled caimans in Taiwan, but due to their large size, the public is asked to consider the environment before raising such animals.
The captured caiman is native to South America, and it is named the "spectacled caiman" because of a transverse bone at the front of its eye that looks like a pair of eyeglasses.