MOBILE COUNTY, Ala. (WKRG) — Alligator mating season begins in April and runs through May. That may be why there have been multiple alligator sightings in Mobile County.
According to JJ McCool from Wildlife Solutions, male alligators go out looking for females to mate with during that time. These male alligators aren’t worried about humans, they are worried about mating. If a person comes near the alligator, it may see the person as a threat, which is when they become dangerous. McCool said normally the big alligators are not seen in public areas.
“If you see a really big, giant alligator out in kind of a public type area, there’s a reason,” said McCool. “It’s either for mating or he’s injured or he’s lost his status.”
Female alligators become more aggressive if people go near their nest with their babies in it. The mother alligators normally incubate their eggs under vegetation, which allows for the temperature to rise. The female will then sit near the mound and guard her nest. McCool said this can be more dangerous than mating.
One of the alligators seen in Mobile County was near the shore of Dauphin Island. Alligators are normally found in freshwater, however, McCool said they can end up in saltwater.
“Typically when we see them out on the beach, in Mobile Bay, see them around Dauphin Island and stuff, it’s almost always they’ve been run out of where they were at,” said McCool. “It’s almost typically because we had a big rain event, a big storm event, and that animal was washed out.”
McCool said it is important not to approach an alligator and if you see one get away from it as fast as you can.
“The biggest danger if you see an alligator in public, hands down, is if you see one in a public area, especially around a boat launch, swimming area or pond, that alligator has probably been fed by humans and therefore it associates human beings with a food source and their dangerous,” said McCool. “It’s typically not the person that’s going to feed it that’s gonna get hurt by it, it’s gonna be the person that doesn’t know [it’s there].”