Family of alligators survive wildfire

Aligator survival

A family of alligators survived a wildfire in Alabama’s Gulf State Park by sheltering in place, in their mud hole. Some people worry and wring their hands about the fate of animals during a wildfire, but most of them have adapted to fire over hundreds of thousands of years and know what to do.

In this case an eight and a half foot long mother alligator and nine babies rode out a fire while they sheltered in a mud hole in a large marshy area of the park.

Aligator survival
The home of the gators. Photo: WALA/CNN

Conservation Officer Roger Reetz, who found the gators, said:

The gators rode out the forest fire in this mud hole. Everything around them is burned. Nothing is left. They rode out this fire storm in this mud hole here and now we are trying to do our part to help them out and get them some water so they can ride it out a little longer until the rains come.

The fire is contained, but the Orange Beach Fire Department is going to fill the area with water to make it easier for the family to survive while the area recovers from the fire.

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Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire.

2 thoughts on “Family of alligators survive wildfire”

  1. Often, the overall quality of the habitat for a population is improved over time, but individuals will suffer. Some will make it, and their offspring will thrive in the improved habitat. Other individuals won’t.

  2. The animals may survive the fire, but if their food and shelter are destroyed by the fire, what then becomes of them?

    They can’t just move into another animal’s territory and expect to be accepted. Many animals are territorial and when resources are limited (as after a fire) there will be competition and there will be winners and losers.

    The happy notion that “they’ll survive and then be fine” should not be swallowed whole w/o closer scrutiny.


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