MOBILE COUNTY, Ala. (WKRG) — Alligator mating season begins in April and runs through May. That may be why there have been multiple alligator sightings in Mobile County.
According to JJ McCool of Wildlife Solutions, male alligators go out looking for females to mate with during that time. These male alligators are not concerned with humans, they are concerned with mating. If a person approaches the alligator, he may see the person as a threat, which is when she becomes dangerous. McCool said large alligators are not normally seen in public areas.
“If you see a really big giant alligator in some kind of public area, there’s a reason,” McCool said. “It’s to mate or he’s hurt or he’s lost his status.”
Female alligators become more aggressive if people approach their nest with their young in it. Mother alligators normally incubate their eggs under vegetation, which allows the temperature to rise. The female will then sit near the mound and guard her nest. McCool said this may be more dangerous than mating.
One of the alligators seen in Mobile County was off the coast of Dauphin Island. Alligators are normally found in fresh water, however, McCool said they can end up in salt water.
“Usually when we see them on the beach, in Mobile Bay, we see them around Dauphin Island and so forth, they’ve almost always run out of where they were,” McCool said. “Usually it’s because we had a big rain event, a big storm, and that animal disappeared.”
McCool said it’s important not to approach an alligator, and if you see one, get away as fast as you can.
“The biggest danger if you see an alligator in public, without a doubt, is if you see it in a public area, especially around a pier, swimming area or pond, that alligator has likely been fed by humans and therefore is associated with humans. with a food source and they are dangerous,” McCool said. “Usually, it is not the person who is going to feed him that is going to get hurt, but the person who does not know [it’s there].”