AUBURN, Mass. -- There was a surprise visitor in an Auburn creek Monday.

Residents and business owners spotted a 4-foot-long alligator wading in and sunning on the shores of Dunn's Brook.

Police, along with a member of the Boston Animal Rescue League, corralled the alligator, using nets and animal-control nooses.

After a brief struggle, the alligator's mouth was secured shut with duct tape and the alligator was placed in a cage and taken away.

Environmental Police Officer Paul Norton said alligators are illegal in Massachusetts without a permit. He said it's likely someone bought the alligator as a baby in another state and then released it when it got too big for them.