DARE COUNTY -

A vehicle hit and killed an 800-pound alligator along a highway in Dare County.

Jay Eddy with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said the alligator was killed shortly before midnight Sunday along U.S. 64 in the Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge.

The alligator was 12 feet 4 inches long and weighed at least 800 pounds, Eddy said.

Crews had to use a backhoe to remove the gator. Eddy told ABC affiliate WVEC the gator had been in the area for at least five years.

The alligator is being stored at the N.C. Wildlife Resource Commission, according to WVEC.

Photo credit: WVEC.