EVERETT – Lots of things have floated into the docks at Dagmars Marina near the mouth of the Snohomish River.
Trees, logs, the occasional loose boat, a sofa, once, pumpkins around Halloween.
Still, when a llama – yes a llama, a 450-pound llama – drifted into the marina, it took everyone by surprise.
“I don’t know where it came from,” Everett police Sgt. Robert Goetz said.
Police are aware of the animal, a Lama glama, and have been working with Everett Animal Control and Parks and Recreation to try to figure out what to do about the dead Andean ruminant.
It’s not clear when the long-necked beast died.
Since July 6, the llama corpse has been bobbing around the estuary on tidewater currents.
Dagmars employee Erica Carryl heard about the llama from many boaters, but didn’t go look at it herself.
“I’m a sap,” she said. “I would have sobbed.”
The animals’ natural habitat is the mountains of South America, Pilchuck Veterinary Hospital Dr. Joanne Fehr said.
“I’ve never seen one swim,” she said.
While an autopsy would be required to determine the exact cause of death, the beast could have wandered to the river’s edge to drink and fallen in, she said.
Llamas and their smaller cousins, alpacas, are popular pets and pack animals in Snohomish County.
Everett officials on Thursday learned boaters likely towed the animal into deeper waters of Port Gardner Bay, city spokeswoman Kate Reardon said.
“If those boaters already dragged it out, then the fate of it is probably already determined,” she said.
“Once it sinks, it becomes part of the habitat,” Reardon said.
And if it returns?
“If it comes back, then it would be great if someone lets us know.”
Reporter Jackson Holtz: 425-339-3437 or firstname.lastname@example.org.