Wednesday, January 11, 2012

“Don't call the alligator big mouth till you have crossed the river” ~ Belizean Proverb

The other morning, we went on an "Alligator Walk" at nearby Boyd Hill Nature Preserve.  It was very interesting, beginning with a short lecture on the habits and habitats of alligators - around for nearly 150 million years now.  Did you know that the safest distance to be from a gator is about 40-50 feet?  Also - and we were all interested by this tidbit - when alligators make their nests from nearby growth, the decomposing vegetation serves as an incubators for the eggs, and if the temperature of the nest remains at a constant 93 degrees or warmer, all of the hatchlings will be male.  If the nest remains at a constant 86 degrees or cooler, all of the hatchlings will be female.  Hmmmmmm.......

While there was no guarantee of a gator sighting, we were lucky enough to have two.  This first fellow was sunning himself by the water - there was no way to get a shot of his head - in thick underbrush.  The bird (no idea what kind) was also sunning himself with one eye over his shoulder!

This second alligator was actually quite close by, but keeping the 40-50 foot guideline in mind, none of us went for a closer look.  He seemed completely unperturbed by our presence - I would say that we were all pretty much in awe.

The wildlife in Florida is so different from Central New York!

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