The easiest way to see an alligator is to go to one of the many zoos and alligator farms, but if you want to see these impressive reptiles in the wild, there are several places you can go to increase your chances of getting a really good look at them. Florida … Any fresh water lake, river, retention pond, sewer pipe, stream, spring, swimming pool, swampy area, should be treated with some caution since it is … In June 2016, 2-year-old Lane Graves died after he was snatched from the shore of a Disney World resort by an alligator. Kayaking with alligators is generally a very safe activity. © Gannett Co., Inc. 2020. This includes not just the outskirts, but right in the center of the city! “Not to scare people, but there are over a million of them and they are all around.”. Combined, it has the recipe to give "Florida … Original content available for non-commercial use under a Creative Commons license, except where noted. No swimming. American alligators occur in Florida, southern Texas, Louisiana and parts of North and South Carolina, Georgia and Alabama, with the alligator’s range appearing to inch northward in the last few years. No my question is, how many alligators are there around in the more urban or suburban areas of these cities, and how much do I have to worry about them. In reality, the danger posed by crocodiles and alligators is overblown. It is extremely uncommon to see one in an urban or suburban area but there are some real exceptions to consider. Alligators are native to only the United States, Mexico, and China.. American alligators are found in the southeast United States: all of Florida and Louisiana; the southern parts of Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi; coastal South and North Carolina; East Texas, the southeast corner of Oklahoma, and the southern tip of Arkansas.Louisiana has the largest alligator population. Alligators are native only to the United States and China.. American alligators Edit. 10. But it seems those signs lacked a key detail — that alligators were nearby. Enormous alligator spotted on Florida golf course. Florida alligators are showing their true flexibility and range -- social media has caught one climbing a fence and another swimming in a flooded road. Watch out for increased alligator activity as the weather warms. They just push through the screen and off they go.". Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office took to their official Facebook page as they shared an image of the creature coming out of the drain. That means Floridians can’t just call up the local alligator trapper to remove one like they would if it were a raccoon or possum. Along with the alligators you can also see other types of wildlife such as iguanas and flamingos. One of the people killed was 10-year-old Bradley Weidenhamer, who died after he was attacked by a 400-pound alligator on the Loxahatchee River in 1993. Instead, the FWC operates the Statewide Nuisance Alligator Program, where people can report a suspicious gator. Spring has sprung, and that doesn’t just mean glorious wildflowers on Florida’s trails. ... where I drove in suspect marshy areas to cover a … No not really. "Wildlife in the area is adapting, too; alligators and snakes are moving and finding new spots to sun bathe." Alligators are everywhere in Florida – official estimates suggest there may be more than 1.25 million of them in Florida’s waters. Alligators number 1.3 million throughout Florida but the specimen spotted in Naples shocked even those well used to their presence They both can be deadly dangerous animals, and I would never recommend swimming in their territory. According to the 2012 Scholastic Book of World Records, Louisiana has the largest alligator population, with about two million. Orlando topped the list, with 235, and Sarasota and Tampa came in second and third place, respectively, with 176 and 174 removals last year. Is there any more prominent symbol of Florida than the Florida alligator? 954-434-8111. Try These Thoughtful Good Friday Activities to Make the Holiday Meaningful for Kids RELATED: 750-pound alligator found in Jupiter has new home in Gatorland. I found it more enjoyable to be good to them,” he said. And don't think the prehistoric predators are confined to wildlife areas. The lagoon is linked to Bay Lake by … Serious injuries caused by alligators are rare in Florida, but if you are concerned about an alligator, call FWC’s toll-free Nuisance Alligator Hotline at 866-392-4286. Alligators may occur anywhere there is water—lakes, ponds, rivers, marshes, swamps, and even man-made canals. Adapted and excerpted from: E. Swiman, et al, Living with Alligators: A Florida Reality (WEC203) , Department of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation (rev. © Gannett Co., Inc. 2020. The Palm Beach Post ~ 2751 S. Dixie Highway, West Palm Beach, FL 33405 ~ Do Not Sell My Personal Information ~ Cookie Policy ~ Do Not Sell My Personal Information ~ Privacy Policy ~ Terms Of Service ~ Your California Privacy Rights / Privacy Policy, Your California Privacy Rights / Privacy Policy. They are mainly maintained by the Florida Department of Transportation. If you are in Florida, swim at a pool or a swimming area that is guaranteed to be alligator free. If it means trekking across a trail, swimming miles down a river, or crossing a busy highway to find a female, no problem. “Alligators become more active and visible during spring when temperatures rise and their metabolism increases,” says the Florida … Two years later in June 2018, an alligator killed 47-year-old Plantation resident Shizuka Matsuki while she walked her dogs in Davie’s Silver Lakes Rotary Nature Park. Alligators: Alligators and humans have shared the marshes, swamps, rivers and lakes of the southeastern United States for many centuries. The FWC decides whether it poses a risk and will then assign a trapper that it contracts with and licenses. Annual surveys by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission revealed just how many gators are swimming in Florida lakes. The mutilated body of an alligator with its head and tail cut off was found Thursday in Florida – marking a second such discovery in the state in less than a month. Alligators control their body temperature by basking in the sun, or moving to areas with warmer or cooler air or water temperatures. RELATED: 750-pound alligator found in Jupiter has new home in Gatorland. Maria's Most Recent Stories. “They’ve been at people’s front doors, in retention ponds, swimming pools,” Cochran said. Although alligator bite incidents resulting in serious injury are rare in Florida, the FWC recommends taking precautions when having fun in and around the water. Cochran said if a nuisance gator is 4 feet or longer and the trapper doesn't have a special permit to take it alive, it's usually killed. The response typically involves sending a licensed trapper to locate and remove the animal. Toggle navigation ... your captains will weave through the River of Grass and bring you to a few areas that are well-known for being a gator hangout. Florida alligators are showing their true flexibility and range -- social media has caught one climbing a fence and another swimming in a flooded road. Most American alligators live in Louisiana or Florida, which is home to about 1.3 million alligators. Virtually any body of water can hold alligators. Otherwise, nuisance gators can be sold to an alligator farm. They just push through the screen and off they go.”. Remember, never feed an alligator and keep your distance if you see one. Even by Florida standards, this wildlife video is pretty…wild. "When temperatures rise, an alligator's metabolism increases and they begin seeking prey," an FWC press release says. Do not feed the alligators. As a kid growing up in Florida in the fifties and sixties, an alligator sighting was almost a rarity. With an estimated 1.3 million alligators in Florida, the state’s Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is warning the public to be aware of the increase in alligator activity this time of year and the possibilities of encountering them. Does that mean that everytime you step outside you should be on gurad? Alligators first appeared during the Oligocene epoch about 37 million years ago.. Alligators are most active when temperatures are between 82° to 92° F (28° to 33° C). You can prevent unpleasant encounters by following our tips. VIDEO: Massive 12-foot gator pulled out of Lake Osborne, "They can literally be in any puddle of water," said Boynton Beach resident Richard Cochran, who removed nuisance alligators for the state until last year when an unrelated back injury sidelined him. Original content available for non-commercial use under a Creative Commons license, except where noted. Over the past decade, Florida has averaged seven unprovoked alligator bites to humans per year that are serious enough to require medical treatment. It means alligators are on the move, too. “I don’t like to kill them, and I had a license not to for a couple of years. Alligators pay no attention to obstacles when they’re on the move. Florida residents know that we share the state with a large alligator population — an estimated 1.3 million to be exact! Alligators control their body temperature by basking in the sun, or moving to areas with warmer air or water temperatures. Areas with the highest removals are in and around Tampa, Sarasota, Orlando, Fort Myers and Jacksonville. Male alligators tend to grow larger than females. April is alligator courting season, which means the frisky crocodilians may be venturing out more in the hopes of finding a companion before mating season begins in earnest in May and June. A map of where nuisance alligators have been removed includes all areas of the state, from Pensacola to the Keys. Within the United States, the American crocodile's distribution is generally limited to the southern tip of Florida, though at least two have been found as far north as the Tampa Bay area . Alligators have inhabited Florida's marshes, swamps, rivers and lakes for many centuries, and are found in all 67 counties. Find out the best places to spot alligators and crocodiles in the Everglades on your guided airboat tour with EHP! Alligator Attacks Aren't Always Fatal. That increased to 7,114 last year, according to FWC data. With an estimated 1.3 million alligators in Florida, the state's Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is warning the public to be aware of the increase in alligator … According to the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission, alligator courtship begins in early April, and mating occurs in May or June. Alligators are plentiful in central Florida, including the Orlando area. Tampa topped the list in 2017 with 181 nuisance gators but was bested last year by Sarasota, which tallied 205. Lots of golfers start or end their round of miniature golf by feeding the alligators. There's a lot of lakes in Florida that are artificially created that don't naturally have alligators like the lakes that they make inside of resort communities. While alligators primarily live in the southeastern U.S., crocodiles are found in North, South, and Central America as well as Africa, Southeast Asia, and Australia. Contrary to popular misinformation, the presence of the American alligator is not the reason the American crocodile was unable to populate brackish waters north of Florida, but rather the climate. No. If you have a nuisance alligator in your area, contact the FWC office or call 866-FWC-GATOR (866-392-4286). An alligator is a crocodilian in the genus Alligator of the family Alligatoridae.The two extant species are the American alligator (A. mississippiensis) and the Chinese alligator (A. sinensis).Additionally, several extinct species of alligator are known from fossil remains. The American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis), sometimes referred to colloquially as a gator or common alligator, is a large crocodilian reptile native to the Southeastern United States, with a small population in Mexico. They stop feeding when the ambient temperature drops below approximately 70° F (21° C) and they become dormant below 55° F (13° C). Facts & Safety Tips. There are “no swimming” signs posted in the area where the boy was taken, however, there is no signage warning visitors about the presence of alligators, a Disney spokesperson confirmed to PEOPLE. Alligators. The State of Florida has a nuisance alligator program and will respond quickly to any concerns. The largest Florida alligator on record was just over 14 ft. in length. "Not to scare people, but there are over a million of them and they are all around.". Adults have grayish-green backs and tails and white to yellowish undersides. Living in Florida, we have to share our space with a very large reptile, the American alligator (Alligator mississipiensis).Because of Florida's booming population growth, people and alligators are constantly forced to cross paths, increasing the chances of conflict. Many residents seek waterfront homes, and increasingly participate in water-related activities. Choose the plan that’s right for you. FWC biologists regularly document, tag and release gators. In June 2016, 2-year-old Lane Graves died after he was snatched from the shore of a Disney World resort by an alligator. Areas with the highest removals are in and around Tampa, Sarasota, Orlando, Fort Myers and Jacksonville. 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