Greater chance of being hit by lightning, yet here we are: Alligator at the beach

Written by: Clare-Anne Canfield  

Published on Friday, July 13th, 2018 at 7:17 am EDT

Written by: Clare-Anne Canfield


This alligator is my spirit animal. The Florida heat gets to us all. Photo Credit: Clare-Anne Canfield

I've read that you have a much higher chance of being struck by lightning than running into an alligator at the beach. Perhaps it is time that Floridians adjust that saying considering it's the first line in a news story about two alligators being spotted near Bradenton beach within the last few weeks.

As for my own "lightning strike" I give you the juvenile alligator I spotted at Bayport Park in Weeki Wachee. This little one was not in the springs, but in a kayak launch right off of the beach area.
Juvenile alligator enjoying a nice day at the beach. Photo Credit: Clare-Anne Canfield

Should people be afraid? Nope, well not of alligators, but the drivers and boaters are a different story. Alligators are amazingly tolerant of humans and given that there are at least three alligators in every puddle in Florida, it's amazing more people are not harmed. They have outstanding lifespans and ferocious immune systems.

Use common sense when living in or visiting Florida:
  1. Do not feed the wildlife. Fed wildlife lose their fear of humans. Fed wildlife are ultimately dead wildlife.
  2. Dogs or small children? Keep them away from water, especially murky water. Keep them on a leash or whatever people use for kids these days.
  3. Do not pet the alligators. I know it may be tempting here folks, but don't.
  4. Want that awesome picture of the baby alligators? Get a powerful lens. Mother alligators will aggressively defend their young.
  5. Practice appreciating nature and respecting that you're hiking in, swimming in, and invading the homes of many wild animals.
  6. If you see an alligator at the beach, take a picture and leave it alone. Everything craves some sunshine and crab meat from time to time. 
  7. Be a good human. If you hate nature and animals - move to the city where it's quiet and safe...Oh wait. 

Warning: Do not pet. Photo Credit: Clare-Anne Canfield