HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. - The state Department of Natural Resources is looking into the release of a 12-foot alligator by a wrangler last weekend.

The gator was captured on Hilton Head Island and released Sunday in Jasper County. The department says nuisance alligators should be killed rather than relocated.

Joe Maffo of Critter Management caught the alligator early Saturday on Hilton Head and released it in Skull Creek on the west side of the island. Maffo says the gator was the largest that he had encountered in three decades.

The gator is estimated to be 50 years old and weigh 1,000 pounds. Maffo says he made an error in judgment but opted to relocate the gator because many people did not want it killed.