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Gators active looking for warmth with cold weather

Posted at 11:13 PM, Nov 14, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-15 02:20:14-05

LEHIGH ACRES, Fla. — I’m a Floridian and I’ve never seen a gator this close,” said Rosy Villarreal from Lehigh Acres.

Villarreal and her kids said an alligator showed up on their front porch Sunday.

The family caught what happened on video.

“I opened up the door and it was literally right there, just a few inches away,” said Villarreal.

She said her five kids were outside a couple minutes before the gator showed up.

“My kids were right behind me. My husband was too. We were panicking,” said Villarreal. “I know it wasn’t a big gator but we’ve never seen a gator this close.”

Turns out, it’s not that unusual for alligators to be out and about this time of year.

“When the temperatures drop, the gators are coming closer to the shoreline,” said FWC alligator trapper, Ray the Trapper. “They are getting out of the water to warm themselves because they are cold-blooded animals.”

Ray the Trapper said other cold-blooded animals like cane toads and snakes are also looking for places to warm up.

“They could be looking for warmth from a vehicle, they are looking for warmth off of the roadway, concrete, sidewalk, pool, jacuzzi,” said Ray the Trapper.

He recommends you be extra aware of your surroundings as temperatures get cooler.

If you come across a gator or other wildlife, keep your distance and contact FWC right away.