Walking with the Alligators

Walking with the Alligators
A Florida Alligator

November 7, 2013

Euthanized and Harvested

A Florida Alligator sunning itself on shore.
Picture credit: John White

Recently someone asked me how I choose the subjects of the Blogs posted here.
My answer to him/her, made perfect sense, to me at least.
I said that if something makes me cry or very angry, it is going to be passed along to all of you.
What was on our news here this week  is not a new story, which is part of the reason that it must be shared, it is an ever repeating tragedy.
There are two animals in Florida that are constantly making the news, black bears  and  alligators.
When either of these two animals wander out of the safety of their worlds, into the dangerous one that Humans occupy, the outcome is frequently not good.
If a black bear behaves well, meaning, it goes back where it came from without any human contact, the bear lives, when it does not, the result can  be tragic.
But, when it comes to alligators, the authorities here, use a completely different barometer for handling them and it’s all about size.
If the errant, or troublemaking alligator, has the misfortune to be more than four feet long, it will most certainly be “euthanized and harvested, “ two words that have now become despicable to me.
The ongoing abuse towards the Florida alligator is extremely hard and sad to see on our local news so frequently.
It seems that their stories have become so common, that people have become desensitized to their maltreatment.
The strange occupants of this state,  never seem to run out of ways to abuse, hurt, maim and/or kill this remarkable creature, that surely deserves at least a little respect for its prominent place in animal history.
The latest, most recent and final prompt for this posting today, happened this week in a local town, when an alligator made the mistake of taking refuge under a car.
When it was discovered by the owner, the expected calls were made and the officials arrived.
The alligator was found to be over four feet and it was doomed to death.
The alligator is a throw back to a time eons ago, when they and their fellow cohabitors of this young planet were the rulers of all that they surveyed, roughly 37 million years ago during the Oligocene epoch.
But even though somehow, miraculously, alligators managed to survive and thrive all of this time in spite of what we have done to their world and to them, how do we reward them?
We eliminate them when they show up, depending on their size.
I am not sure if Humans will survive as long as the alligators and their fellow ancient friends, but my thinking is, do we deserve to?
Humans do not always play nice.
We are not always kind to those that we share this planet with, in fact we are often cruel for no other reason, than that we can be.
If the bible is correct and the insects do inherit the Earth, perhaps it will be our Karma?

The alligator’s story is here:   Man surprised to find gator strolling along Merritt Island Street

**Just a side note on this story**
Merritt Island Florida, where this particular alligator was found in close proximity to, is home to a huge
Wildlife Refuge, where vast numbers of animals live permanently and are considered to be safe from harm.
Those silly animals just don’t understand where they are supposed to stay!  Can’t they read the signs?

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