You'd expect this in Florida or New Orleans, perhaps, but Chicago? Not so much: A passenger at O'Hare International Airport discovered a two-foot long alligator lurking beneath an escalator Friday morning. Police arrived quickly to whisk away the gator for some recovery time—the poor thing's bones were weak from malnutrition—but she's certainly not the first wild animal to make its way to an airport…
1. Turtles at Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport
Yum? In July, a man in China tried to smuggle a turtle through security by disguising it as a burger inside of a KFC sandwich box. An X-ray machine caught the critter, yet the man repeatedly denied he had a turtle when officers questioned him. The poor animal was wrapped inside a burger bun smeared with mayonnaise.
2. Baby Leopards, Panthers, Monkeys, and a Bear at Bangkok International Airport
In 2011, a man at Bangkok International Airport brought suitcases filled with baby leopards, panthers, monkeys, and a bear. Remarkably, he was caught because officials had been tracking him for illegal wildlife trafficking…not because it's really difficult to smuggle a bear through security.
3. Kangaroo at Melbourne Airport
After being hit by a car last month, an injured kangaroo hopped into the Melbourne Airport…and found its way to the terminal's pharmacy, of all places. Wildlife volunteers eventually tranquilized the distressed animal and safely captured it.
4. Hummingbirds at Rochambeau airport in Cayenne, French Guiana
This has got to hurt: In 2011, a Dutch passenger sewed more than a dozen humming birds into his underwear and tried to smuggle them onto a flight. Each tiny bird was individually wrapped in cloth, though their beaks were uncovered and the animals did not seem to be sedated.
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