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View Full Version : Are there alligators in springs?



ScubaIvan
November 20th, 2007, 04:56 PM
Hello all. I am still pretty new to diving and not the most knowlegable in wildlife. My questions is are there alligators in springs that we go diving in (i.e. Ginnie, Alexander, Rainbow, etc.) Is it too cold for them they are reptiles and are cold blooded. How do we go about avoiding them any suggestions or thoughts. Has anyone come across one? *GULP*

Thanks.

chickdiver
November 20th, 2007, 05:07 PM
Often, yes.

xiSkiGuy
November 20th, 2007, 05:17 PM
There was one in hanging out at Peacock earlier this year. It was a little creepy to finish your dive and see it looking at you 10 feet away.

One of the Park Rangers claimed that snorkelers had been petting it! :11: Needless to say they relocated it.

LiteHedded
November 20th, 2007, 05:27 PM
the answer is YES

:)

Damselfish
November 20th, 2007, 05:30 PM
bet those aren't the answers you wanted to hear. ;)

eandiver
November 20th, 2007, 06:47 PM
In Florida there is a chance for an alligator in any body of water.
The more popular and crowded springs ( Ginnie) have fewer or none than the lesser visited springs (Peacock) but there still may be a gator around even with crowds (Alexander). The vast majority of them will leave you alone if you do the same.

Spring time is mating season and they become more aggressive. I have come across several while river diving and kayaking and never had a problem.

Always buddy up with a slower diver......it gives you the edge. :)
Swim with a lot of people.......takes the gator longer to decide so again you have the edge. :)

Surelyshirly
November 20th, 2007, 06:57 PM
I asked this same question when I started diving and here is what I was told

Depending on the size of the gators present you should perhaps carry a "Gator Bell" to warn them of your presence and some pepper spray for defense. To figure out the size of the gators present though, you have to inspect their poop. Gators under 12 ft have poop that is small to a moderate in size with a normal smell. Gators larger than 12 ft have a much larger poop with tiny little bells and it smells like pepper spray.
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SuPrBuGmAn
November 20th, 2007, 06:58 PM
Gators?

Only if you are lucky!

flatwood
November 20th, 2007, 06:58 PM
Someone told me that there was a gator at morrison springs so large that it was eating the cattle from the local farms! Makes me wonder what REALLY dug that hole that they call a "natural spring".












:D

mike_s
November 20th, 2007, 07:36 PM
They have a sign up at Morrison warning of Gators....

I've got a pic of it somewhere...
(I found a copy of it, but it's been photoshopped a little.... heh.)

scubafool
November 20th, 2007, 08:26 PM
Yes, it is entirely possible that you could see an alligator while diving in Florida springs. I have seen them at Peacock Springs and Alexander Springs. I know that they removed the gators from Alexander not to long ago, and I beleive that the same has occurred at Peacock as well.

Generally, they are not aggressive, and will leave you alone if you do the same. However, as others have said, that is not neccesarily true during mating season.

Tom Winters
November 20th, 2007, 09:25 PM
At least in a decent spring, you have a chance at seeing them from a ways off. Try to grab one though and you see how fast those guys can move. Don't go trying to grab any gator if they're over 8' though - leave that to the experts, adrenalin junkies, women named named Eileen, and men named Bob or Stu.

flatwood
November 20th, 2007, 10:12 PM
At least in a decent spring, you have a chance at seeing them from a ways off. Try to grab one though and you see how fast those guys can move. Don't go trying to grab any gator if they're over 8' though - leave that to the experts, adrenalin junkies, women named named Eileen, and men named Bob or Stu.

8' is not that large. Heck... I'm 6'2". :D

simbrooks
November 20th, 2007, 10:35 PM
8' is not that large. Heck... I'm 6'2". :D
Of your 6'2", how big is your mouth???? Of their 8', at least 18" to 2' is all teeth ;)

As for the gators being cold blooded - they hang out on the banks and go for a dip every now and then. They dont hang around in the water all day.

Divergirl4U
November 21st, 2007, 07:38 PM
Yes ;) this is Florida you can expect them in every body of fresh water

ScubaIvan
November 21st, 2007, 08:14 PM
Thank you all for the insight. I will just need to keep a better eye out then.

ce4jesus
November 22nd, 2007, 12:41 AM
Its not the gators you got to worry about....its those 30ft Burmese Pythons.

PalatkaBoy
November 22nd, 2007, 01:12 AM
I believe Ber Rabbit and her crew ran into one at Alexander earlier this year. I've seen the photos on a thread so I assume they're loaded into her photo gallery.

427Dave
November 22nd, 2007, 12:04 PM
Naw there is no gators,

http://www.scubaboard.com/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/72079http://www.scubaboard.com/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/72079

This was the day with Ber Rabbit
ScubaBoard Gallery - Diving with Ber and Crew - Powered by PhotoPost (http://www.scubaboard.com/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/72079)

fldiver1
November 22nd, 2007, 12:16 PM
If you live and dive in Florida, its just a fact of life. you go swimming around here, you swim with gators. Dont worry though, they are kinda like sharks. They stay away from ya unless they are REAL HUNGRY or REAL CURIOUS then they will come in and bump ya, may take a little nibble just to see whats what. But unlike sharks, GATORS LIKE THE TASTE!!! I here we taste like chicken to them!! HAHA JK

Seriously though, just give me a wide berth and they most likely will do the same. I have seen gators on at least half my spring dive trips. Blue Spring, Alexander, Troy, etc. etc. They seem to always be around. Even had on swim RIGHT over my head at Alexander once. Never even looked at me but whenmy bubbles came up RIGHT under him(purged my regs under as he was swimming over) he shot away VERY FAST!! Didnt realize how fast they could swim!

Steve_Dives
November 22nd, 2007, 12:33 PM
I believe Ber Rabbit and her crew ran into one at Alexander earlier this year. I've seen the photos on a thread so I assume they're loaded into her photo gallery.

Yeah, there's a picture of Ber and a gator still hanging in our LDS. I'd have to kill her if she got eaten by a gator! :D Well, that might not work, but I'd be looking for a new pair of gator skin boots. :11:

I don't know if it was her trip or someone elses, but the divers saw an alligator stalking a father and small child snorkeling/swimming on the surface. They got out before anything serious happened.

Thalassamania
November 22nd, 2007, 12:34 PM
I've seen some good sized 'gators in freshwater in Florida, never had a problem. I did have to leave the water in the Gulf of Siam when a croc started to pay attention. I wounder if the rather rare saltwater crocs now found at the north end of the Florida Keys are potentially as dangerous?


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