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The study found female alligators are reproductive far longer than previously thought, 46 years past the onset of sexual maturity in one case.

The American alligator Alligator mississippiensis , a reptile, is a member of the Family Alligatoridae. Alligator populations reached their lowest levels in the early ‘s due to several factors. However, management and conservation actions by state and federal governments as required by the Endangered Species Act ESA allowed the alligator population to increase. They were removed from “total protection” status under the ESA in The alligator is now listed as “threatened by similarity of appearance” because of its likeness to other protected crocodilians worldwide.

This provides greater flexibility for South Carolina and other southeastern states to manage alligator populations. Today, approximately , alligators occur in the state of South Carolina. Alligators are typically found south of the fall line which roughly traverses the state from I in Aiken to Kershaw County, then up U.

Highway toward Cheraw in Chesterfield County. There is no evidence that alligator populations reproduce north of the fall line, and it is suspected that many of the alligators found well above the fall line may have been illegally relocated. However, a small number of individual alligators can naturally show up in these areas.

Alligators usually remain in the area where they were hatched for two to three years before establishing their own range. Females generally have small home ranges, while males may occupy a home territory of more than 2 square miles. Severe drought or flood conditions may cause alligators to move considerable distances in search of suitable waters.

They normally are found in marshes, swamps, rivers, farm ponds and lakes in the wild, but also have been found in ditches, neighborhoods, drainage canals, retention ponds, roadways, golf course ponds and sometimes in swimming pools.

Nearly any water body in the Lowcountry has the potential to harbor alligators at one time or another. During the remainder of the year, males prefer open and deep waters while females seek out nesting habitat in secluded areas with shallow water and heavy vegetation.

Alligators can live up to 60 years in captivity, but in the wild they rarely live more than 50 years. Male alligators can presumably grow up to 16 feet in length, although footers are rare, whereas female alligators can grow up to 10 feet. After breeding, females lay an average of 35 to 40 eggs that incubate for about 65 days. Hatchlings are about 8 to 10 inches in length. About 20 percent of the young will survive to maturity. The others fall victim to predators such as raccoons, birds, snakes, otters and other alligators.

They grow approximately eight to 10 inches per year for the first few years and will reach sexual maturity at about six to seven feet in length. Large alligators can reach weights of over pounds. During the first few years their diet consists mainly of small prey such as snails, crayfish, frogs, insects and other invertebrates. They help maintain the population balance of certain prey species and they help shape and modify habitat.

During times of severe drought, alligators are known to dig holes “gator holes” to concentrate water. This helps the alligator survive, and provides a water source to many other species of plants and animals in the area.

In , the SCDNR initiated a problem alligator program that allows contracted agent trappers to capture and harvest specific problem alligators greater than four feet in length. A nuisance alligator is one that exhibits aggressive behavior toward humans or domestic animals, has become habituated to people, shows symptoms of some debilitating illness or injury, or inhabits recreational waters intended primarily for swimming.

South Carolina’s alligator hunting season has been designated as a quota hunt where a limited number of hunters are allowed to harvest one alligator 4 feet or greater in length each from a specified hunt unit.

A mother and her two children were killed after their vehicle caught fire in an early morning crash near Holly Hill, according to the Orangebu…. Register for more free articles. Sign up for our newsletter to keep reading. Be the first to know Get local news delivered to your inbox! Sign up! Already a Subscriber? Sign in. Terms of Service Privacy Policy. Back to homepage. Subscriber Login. Please subscribe to keep reading. You can cancel at any time.

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During courtship and breeding, from April to May, alligators prefer open waters. Alligators are carnivores and will eat almost anything they can catch. Agent trappers harvest approximately problem alligators annually in South Carolina.

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– SCDNR – Species: American Alligator


Alligators can get up to 14 feet long and weigh 1, pounds in South Carolina, according to state officials. The reptiles are found mostly in a diverse series of habitats along the Coastal Plain, including tidal marshes, swamps, rivers and lakes, Clemson University officials said in a report. In South Carolina, alligators have been recorded to reach lengths of more than 13 feet.

Alligators live in swampy areas, rivers, streams, lakes and ponds. South Florida is the only place where you can find both crocodiles and alligators.

The American alligator Alligator mississippiensis is the only crocodilian native to South Carolina. Alligator Adventure: Located at Barefoot Landing in North Myrtle Beach, this nature park lives up to its name with hundreds of alligators and crocodiles on the property, including a foot crocodile named Utan and live feeding shows.

American alligators occur naturally in North Carolina, inhabiting bay lakes, rivers, creeks, marshes, swamps and ponds, with local populations distributed in patches along the entire coast. There is always a potential risk when swimming in natural waters. However, there is a greater chance of getting sick in waters with more bacteria.

The alligator population has thrived in South Carolina in recent years — so much so, that a hunting season was instituted in Where do crocodiles live in Florida? These are some very timid reptiles, after all. Where did the 6-foot American crocodile come from? The large reptile was caught in the surf and may actually have made his way up the southeastern coast — from Florida — by swimming, plain and simple. How do you euthanize an alligator in South Carolina?

To euthanize an alligator more than 5 feet long, discharge a. Avoid placing the shot between the eyes or the top the skull, as the bullet may ricochet off the bone. Shoot at the base of the skull instead.

If using a bangstick, only discharge it. December 5, Author. Table of Contents 1 Are alligators everywhere in South Carolina? We use cookies on our website to give you the most relevant experience by remembering your preferences and repeat visits. However, you may visit “Cookie Settings” to provide a controlled consent. Cookie Settings Accept All. Manage consent. Close Privacy Overview This website uses cookies to improve your experience while you navigate through the website.

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