FWC says alligators could be more active in SWFL this spring

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Alligator sightings are on the rise in Southwest Florida. Experts tell Fox 4 that warmer temperatures and little rain has alligators on the move.

With the current drought many rivers and canals are drying up so alligators are searching for water anywhere they can find it. 

"They are on the move looking for courtship, but they are also running out of all their old watering holes or where they used to frequent," said alligator rescuer Vincent Rose.

In the last few days, alligators have appeared on busy roadways and in people's yards. FWC said alligators start courtship in April and mating in May and June. 

"The biggest thing that attracts an alligator into your area is indirect or direct feeding," said Cherie Rose.

Rose and her husband recently moved to Fort Myers. The couple has rehabilitated, researched and rescued alligators and crocodiles from all over the world for the past 20 years. The couple said to avoid river banks at dusk and dawn but also something as simple as feeding ducks can create a disturbance.

"The biggest thing that attracts an alligator into your area is indirect or direct feeding," said Rose.

Florida Fish and Wildlife has a 24 hour hotline you can call if one does end up in your yard. Experts recommend you never approach one.

"If they feel corned in your backyard they can do some damage and they can outrun you, they can go through a glass plate," said Rose. 

Have you spotted an Alligator? Send your photos to News@fox4now.com, you can also tweet us @FOX4NOW or post on our Facebook page.  

For more information on Alligators: CLICK HERE

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