WILD animals including jaguars, crocodiles and turtles have been spotted at popular holiday resorts in Mexico.
The creatures have returned to the area after hotels were closed and people have been told to stay indoors due to the coronavirus pandemic.
⚠️ Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news & updates
Videos have captured the animals in Quintana Roo, where the resorts of Cancun and Riviera Maya are located.
One video, which has been watched 120,000 times on Facebook, shows a huge crocodile swimming along a canal between balconies.
The people filming express their shock at the animal as he swims past without stopping for the people watching him.
Another video captured a jaguar roaming the streets of Tulum.
According to local media, the big cat was spotted near the Grand Sirenis Riviera Maya Resort & Spa.
A leatherback sea turtle was even caught laying 112 eggs on the beach in front of a luxury hotel in Cancun.
Alfredo Arellano, secretary of ecology and environment of the state of Quintana Roo, said the turtle sighting was “very unusual”.
He explained: “On an average, we only have one leatherback turtle nesting per year in the entire state and the nesting season doesn’t start until May.”
Alfredo added that they were endangered due to the urbanisation of the area.
He said it was likely to have happened “because in the absence of people, with hotels closed, beaches empty, streets without cars, wildlife naturally returns to those areas”.
Hotel occupancy in the state of Quintana Roo is now below 60 per cent, according to State Tourism Minister Marisol Venegas.
Even more cancellations are expected in the days ahead, dealing a blow to an industry that accounts for 8 per cent of the Mexican economy.
Most years, hotel reservations made during the mid-March to mid-April season reach close to full occupancy – now more than 50 resorts are closed.
Usually-packed beaches, bars and clubs slowly have emptied out after the US issued a ban on non-essential travel to Mexico, including for tourist trips.
Limits have been placed on the number of people that can use public transportation in an effort to promote social distancing in Cancun, which is the top foreign destination for American tourists, outside of cruises.
CORONAVIRUS CRISIS – BE IN THE KNOW
Hundreds of Americans rushed to cross into the US from Mexico earlier this month ahead of the border closure.
The border will remain open mainly for trade and will restrict travel, as officials work to limit international travel amid the COVID-19 outbreak.
Mexico has confirmed more than 1,000 cases of coronavirus.