My Dad & I took J to the Everglades while were visiting them in Marco this year. It was so much fun!
I've become so fascinated with nature & how to share it with Jacob, that I really loved being out in the Everglades with him. Our air boat Captain was a native Everglades resident, and shared many stories about the wildlife. One being, he has to help his mom close up her boat launch every June, or alligators take it over as their sun deck. We were blessed to be the only ones on the boat, so he really gave us a fabulous tour.
Before we went out, the Captain cut into a watermelon for snack, but it wasn't any good, so he shared it with the gators who were circling the area for food. J was so excited when he shared his watermelon with J, so he could feed the alligators too.
Interesting facts we learned:
*Gators are fresh water animals. As the Everglades become more fed by the Gulf, and less by rain water, the gators begin to actively seek fresh water sources. As soon as it rains, they venture back in the Everglades, as more food is available there.
*Gators can climb 6ft chain linked fences
*Gators can jump half their height from a stand still
*Gators can run up to 30mph
*Gators hatch around 200 babies in each liter, but only 1 makes it to adult hood on average
*Big frogs (think frog legs you dine upon) eat baby gators
Also, we learned a lot about the Burmese Python problem they are currently fighting in the Everglades. Our Captain was friends with the guy who ultimately terminated this snake in this article: http://staugustine.com/news/2011-11-01
***Warning: The snakes last dinner is shown in a picture contained in the article***