A home owner in Florida (where else?) got one heck of a surprise this week when an eight-foot (2.4 metre) crocodile showed up for a dip in his swimming pool. With the help of Florida Fish and Wildlife, the lounging reptile was captured and returned safely to the wild, but not before local officials managed to snap this ridiculous photo: 

Image: Lieutenant David Carey

Crocodiles like our pools for the same reason we do: they provide ample sun for basking, and cool water for temperature control. 

Although we typically hear about Florida's alligators, the southern half of the state is home to American crocodiles like our busted friend here. The species was listed as endangered in 1975, but in the years since, numbers have climbed from 300 to more than 1,500, so sightings like this are becoming more frequent.

One of the largest crocodile species alive today, chasing Australia's infamous saltwater giants, male American crocodiles typically reach 13 feet (4m) in length, but some reports suggest males as long as 20 feet have been spotted. They might not be as impressive as the recently discovered Machimosaurus rex, but we certainly wouldn't want to share a pool with one. We're glad to see this guy back where he belongs.


Top header image: Steve Corey/Flickr