Playa del Carmen, Q.R. — Reports of crocodiles at a popular beach area for locals in Playa del Carmen left people scrambling early Sunday morning. Several locals who went to the beach from nearby residential communities reported seeing three large crocodiles along the beach area of Punta Esmeralda in the city’s north.
Civil Protection responded to the call that the reptiles were seen walking the beach. The intention was to capture the animals, however, after numerous emergency officials arrived, a search for the crocodiles turned up empty.
Personnel from the fire department and civil protection closed the Punta Esmeralda beach area for the entire morning as they continued to search for the crocodiles.
Lucio Salvador Arguea, deputy director of Civil Protection, said the animals likely returned to the nearby mangroves. “These animals come out because there is a lot of humidity in the environment.”
He noted, “We do not mistreat them when we capture them and reintroduce them back to their natural habitat. We ask people to be careful with these reptiles.”
It was early afternoon when the Punta Esmeralda beach area was reopened to sunbathers.