That’s a Whole Lotta Lizards!
Bob McNally 05.01.17
Florida is America’s gator central, at least if you consider how many “nuisance” alligators were removed by trappers in the state in 2016. And this doesn’t even count the number of gators taken statewide in the large and popular Florida alligator sport hunting season.
Alligator trappers hired by Florida have captured and removed the mega-lizards in more than 6,500 locations statewide in 2016, resulting in 8,050 captured gators.
According to news reports, nuisance alligator removals have averaged 7,726 a year between 2001 and 2015. The range is from 5,833 in 2002 to a high of 11,664 in 2006. Alligators are removed when classified as a “nuisance” (longer than four feet and posing a threat to people, pets, or property).
Florida’s out-of-state visitor “season” may be winter and early spring, but for alligators it’s summer. And the approach of the alligator breeding season makes adults irritable.
Florida’s alligator population is estimated at about 1.3 million, and alligators live in all 67 counties in the state.