Gators, Etc.

Thanks to the recommendation of a wonderful friend, I took my boys to one of those off-the-beaten-path type of places that promise to be an adventure. This particular excursion was to the Critchlow Alligator Sanctuary.

Upon first glance, I wasn’t sure what to quite expect. But, in retrospect, what we found were some people who are filled with passion. For those who do not know me, I am a very passionate person myself. Everything I dream and do, I do with conviction and heart. To me, these people are exactly that — about alligators and preserving the ones who have had a rough go of it.

At the start of the adventure, we met some interesting creatures.

There were lizards,

and turtles.

Some of them looked almost Jurassic.

We got to hold young alligators and learn about their biology.

There was a greenhouse filled with tropical plants. There, we searched for frogs hiding in the vegetation.

Then it was off to watch the big guys (and gals).

The alligators almost seemed excited to see us. I’m sure they knew we had gator food.

They are fed a special diet formulated just for alligators. Guests get to feed them which gets pretty exciting. They growl and snap their teeth.

On the way out, we got to meet this charming young man. He’s only 17 years old — just a baby for a tortoise. He wandered around looking for dandelions and shade.

If you visit the alligator sanctuary, don’t expect to find a pristine complex free of dirt with manicured lawns. Do expect to find a couple of people who love what they do and spend their time caring for the many animals living with them and expect to find an abundance of alligators that seem to smile.

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