A video is circulating on social networks in which you can see a huge alligator walking in the gardens of the golf course of the Valencia Golf & Country Club country center in the city of Naples, Florida, USA.
The recording lasts only 15 seconds, however, it can be seen as a reptile several meters long and legs taller than a dog moves agilely towards a mighty river.
Many users of Twitter and other social networks reacted in disbelief to the video. Stating that a reptile of this size must be the product of multimedia editing work and not the extreme and humid ecosystems of the Florida Peninsula.
The alligator was sighted as Hurricane “Eta” hit the North Florida region. This meteorological phenomenon went from being a tropical storm as it moved away from the Cuban northwest and approached the south of the west coast of the United States. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) reported that Eta has become a Category 1 hurricane, with maximum sustained winds of 210 km per hour.
The New York Post interviewed two employees of the Valencia Golf & Country Club over the phone, who confirmed that the alligator was very real, although they were not particularly impressed with its size.
“It has been some time since I last saw such a large reptile. I was quite surprised.” pointed out Jeff Jones, professional golf instructor; later he added that the neighbors had already reported seeing the huge animal.
Tyler Stolting, the club’s first professional golf assistant, claimed it was one of the curses of living in the touristy, tropical state of Florida. In which hurricanes and wild reptiles are part of the day to day. In fact, they are the official reptile of the state and, also, the mascot of the university.
Florida, and the rest of the North American Southeast, is the natural habitat of alligators. These alligators weigh more than 450 kilos and can measure 4 meters. The largest seen in the area measured 5 meters. They are generally not dangerous to humans, as we are not one of their natural prey. However, the loss of the natural ecosystems of alligators and the irresponsible behavior of people has caused the attacks of these animals to be on the rise.
The state of Florida currently has a population of 20 million humans and 1.5 million alligators; therefore, encounters between both species are possible and, in fact, probable. Especially near rivers, mangroves, swamps, canals and lakes.
According to Stanford researcher Joseph Forrester, human deaths related to alligator attacks are a statistical anomaly, between 1999 and 2014 only 9 people died from attacks by these reptiles; On the other hand, during the same period, 486 people died due to dog attacks and another 1,163 due to attacks by other mammals such as cows and horses.
Being at close range they can be very dangerous. It is recommended to have a distance of at least 15 meters with these reptiles.
During the mid-twentieth century, the poachers caused the American alligator to be considered endangered; however, during the 1980s the harassment of these reptiles ceased and the population recovered. In 1987, they were removed from the endangered species list and are currently classified as endangered species.