florida alligator population map
FWC issues permits as a method to help manage the alligator population. They have extra sensory organs inside the snout for a heightened sense of smell and their vision above water can be compared to that of an owl. Texas' alligator population, which numbered just a few thousand when they were protected by state and federal laws in the late 1960s, has exploded over the past half-century. The Everglades Alligator Farm is a great stop for travelers heading to the Florida Keys who want to take an airboat ride and see a wildlife show. It is one of two extant species in the genus Alligator within the family Alligatoridae; it is larger than the only other living alligator species, the Chinese alligator. If you call the nuisance hotline with concerns, they'll respond and handle the situation. Do not throw them into the water. 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. The American alligator was abundant in the pre-drainage Everglades in south Florida. No, not anymore. Primarily a coastal crocodilian, the American crocodile exists at the northern end of its range in south Florida. The female will build a nest in the vegetation in or around the water and lay a clutch of 20-50 eggs. If you come across an alligator you believe poses a threat, call the Nuisance Alligator Hotline at 866-392-4286. By using our site, you agree to our, American alligators were once considered almost extinct, By the 1950s, endless hunting had almost wiped out the population, By the 1980s, the population managed to recover; gators were removed from the endangered species list, Although confrontations occur, attacks on humans by alligators are still considered rare, Homes and communities now lie on edges of alligator habitats or have water that alligators seek, Alligators are often drawn to storm water ponds of all sorts, Regardless of whether it’s natural or man-made, if there’s a body of water in Florida, there could be an alligator in it, Alligators have a preference for fresh water and sometimes brackish water, Statistical data suggests that the probability of being killed by an alligator is low, Since the early 1970s, there have been 23 fatalities and under 400 unprovoked bites by alligators in Florida, Mating season for alligators is late April through early June, Females build their nest and lay on average 20-45 eggs in June/July, Eggs traditionally hatch from the middle of August through the beginning of September, Egg, hatchling and nest survival is often stunted by predators (like raccoons) and flooding, Alligators rely on external heat sources in order to regulate their body temperature (which is why they can often be found lying in the sun or on a hot surface), 80-90 degrees Fahrenheit is the range of temperature when gators are most active, Limited feeding takes place during temperatures less than 70 degrees Fahrenheit, The hibernation or dormant period for gators is often when the temperature is below 55 degrees Fahrenheit, Alligator classification: reptiles (direct ancestors: dinosaurs), An alligator’s heart has four chambers (most reptiles have 3), The American alligator is known as the largest reptile in North America, Alligators are the official state reptile of Florida, The alligator is the mascot of the University of Florida, Alligators can go six months a year without eating, Alligators migrate far distances (they walk on roads, crawl through pipes, slug through swamplands), It is difficult to keep alligators contained to one space, Alligators mostly ignore humans and are often unsettled/frightened by them, If hungry, and humans are in the water, alligators may go for the ankles of that nearby human (regardless of age, weight or size), An alligator is able to outrun all human creatures within the first 20-30 feet of exiting the water – making it very difficult for humans to outrun alligators, It is difficult to spot an alligator in the water or on land if it’s in a secluded area, Alligators watch from above the water but they listen and feel vibrations of prey from below the water, Alligators are known to lie on tar roads due to the hot surface, Alligators are prevalent all over Florida, If bit by an alligator, make a lot of noise, use force, poke eyes, Alligator diet includes prey that is easy to find and available often, Adult alligators eat snakes, turtles, smaller mammals, small birds, large/rough fish, Young alligators eat mostly insects, smaller fish, other amphibian creatures/invertebrates, Alligators have been known to eat other alligators and dead animals, Female alligators typically remain under 10 feet long, Male alligators can be much larger than females and over 10 feet in length, If taking a photo or looking at an alligator, remain at least 50 feet away in distance, Do not swim in areas where it’s a known alligator community, Never touch or go near an alligator on a road even if it looks dead, Stay away from water at night and definitely stay away during the breeding season, If you’re in fresh or stagnant water (natural or man-made) in Florida, know that alligators could be anywhere. The hunting and trapping of alligators is only legal through proper permits and strictly enforced quotas. Florida residents know that we share the state with a large alligator population — an estimated 1.3 million to be exact! This is one reason why the State recently expanded the annual alligator harvest. If one bites you, the advice is to make the most noise possible and work hard to get away. "They can create problems for people or other alligators along the way. The Key West Aquarium is part of the Historic Tours of America® eNewsletter. They have since rebounded to perhaps a million or more across the entire state, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. Remember, they’re an important part of Florida’s natural history as well as an integral component of aquatic ecosystems. Alligators live an average of 35-50 years in the wild. They live in freshwater rivers, lakes, swamps, and marshes. A map of where nuisance alligators have been removed includes all areas of the state, from Pensacola to the Keys. According to the Everglades National Park, the largest alligator ever recorded measured 17 feet, 5 inches. 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. Apply to become a FWC nuisance alligator trapper in Pinellas County, Alligator mating season is here, and this is what you need to know, Florida photographer captures snake attempting to escape gator's jaws. The state of Florida presently has over 20 million people and over one million alligators. Florida Alligator Population Map. Florida's alligator population is about 1.3 million, and alligators live in all 67 counties in the state. RECOMMENDED: Florida photographer captures snake attempting to escape gator's jaws. The state’s population is expected to increase from 20.98 million to 21.3 million in 2019. University of North Florida researchers recently published results from a year-long survey of Jacksonville’s urban alligator population. Land development and water management practices for the expansion of a rapidly growing human population have reduced the spatial extent and … Thanks to strict conservation and management programs, Florida’s alligator population has exploded in recent decades. To avoid that problem, the alligators would need to be relocated to remote areas where they wouldn't encounter people, according to FWC. They reside in the Key West Aquarium to further the education of one of Florida’s most important and well represented predators. As the population increases, the swamplands, once patrolled mostly by reptiles and nature’s creatures, become less and less and the possibility of animal encounters increases. 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