Expert Discusses Alligator Safety

In light of public access to a local reservoir being suspended due to alligators in the pond, TV24 talked to Calhoun County Extension Agent Steven Faughn today about the dangers of human-alligator contact. Anniston Water Works and Sewer Board closed Hillabee reservoir in Oxford over the sighting of a large alligator. And, Faughn says alligators are more common in the area then they used to be. He says there are more reports and the local habitat is supporting the alligator migration. He says people have known about the alligators in Hillabee for more than five years. But, agrees that it’s a good idea for local officials to notify people about swimming in areas where there are alligators. Faughn says there is a particular season to harvest alligators. But, even with that activity, the alligator population has rebounded. He says the danger of an alligator attack increases when people have been feeding them. And, yes, he adds that a sighting can be unnerving. According to Faughn, alligators can grow to more than 15 feet long and weight more than a thousand pounds. He says they are more active at night during twilight hours and generally, alligators want to keep their distance.


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