Re: another gator on wheeler

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Posted by Kerry Grissett on June 15, 2003 at 00:50:01:

In Reply to: another gator on wheeler posted by Bassin'Lover on June 14, 2003 at 19:25:27:

If the gator was 4 feet long, you were in absolutely no danger, especially being in a boat. Even if he had been much larger, there is little danger from gators, except for the exceptionally stupid.

I have done a little reading about them recently and although I can't find much, if any, information about the gators in North Alabama which have been documented at least since 1900 and have been undoubtedly here long before that, there has never been one single report of an alligator related injury to a person in north Alabama. No, not one.

From a FAQ on alligators available on the web, you can tell the approximate length of a gator by the distance from the inside of the nostril to the eyes.

"The distance from inside of the nostrils to the eyes in inches is approximately the length
of the gator in feet. If you see a 8 inch snout, you may have located a 8 ft. gator."

Alligators are generally shy when it comes to humans, but can be approached (not advised) as they are "confident" in their stealth or ability to hide. Feeding or otherwise interacting with them is also not advised as this may cause them to lose their shyness towards humans which might end in the necessity to destroy the animal and that would be a shame.

Most likely many, if not all of these displaced gators will not survive the upcoming winter. The recent flood displaced them from the few areas in north Alabama where they can survive the colder winters.

In any case, if you see one count yourself lucky and if you have a camera, take a few pictures. Although this area is the northern extreme of their range, it is not likely that we will ever see a surge in the gator population in this area. In fact, the gators that were brought in, I think in the 1970's, were brought in from Florida to suppliment the gene pool of the native gators here. You will hear lots of tales about how they were brought in to control beavers, gar, etc, etc, but none of this is true. Urban/rural myths...

Good luck and good fishin'


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