Category Archives: Reptiles

Two Ponds, Two Alligators, Different Light

These two Alligators were swimming in different ponds, taken about an hour apart on a recent June morning.

Alligator
Alligator and small tree with reflection, 8:15 am

The bank where I was standing was much higher above the water in the second image, the sun was higher in the sky, and there was a remarkable difference in how the water appeared. The second Alligator was moving a little faster, too.

Alligator
Alligator behind grasses on bank, 9:15 am

Do Birds Play Chicken?

Alligators follow their instincts when they hear a splash in the water…lets go check it out.

An Anhinga had jumped into the pond and was swimming with his head up. First one then two  Alligators were in hot pursuit.

Alligator and Anhinga
Two Alligators

I was too far away to really see what was happening. In fact I probably shouldn’t have bothered with these images with the glare on the water, but it was like watching a train wreck. I’m not sure if this churning of the water was the two Alligators having a spat or if the bird had ducked under and the gators lunged.

Alligator and Anhinga
Alligator with eyes reflecting in the water

The Alligators backed away a bit then the Anhinga popped up between them then leisurely swam along as if he were alone. A minute or two later they all lost interest and went their separate ways.

Alligator and Anhinga
Alligator and Anhinga

Click on images for larger view. 

Anole Against the Grain

The texture and color of this Anole made a nice contrast with the tree bark as he posed perpendicularly to the bark grain.

Anole
Anole on a tree

He very considerately made a 90 degree turn to show off the effect of his body with the grain. His tail didn’t completely follow.

Anole
Anole on a tree

This Anole looks a little different than most of them that I have seen with the white stripe down his back and rougher and more speckled skin. Click on either image to get a closer look.

Roughing It

We are used to seeing Alligators in swamps, on riverbanks, and around marshes. These two found sunny spots that were more genteel looking. The first one was snoozing in a large patch of lawn clover.

Alligator in the Clover
Alligator in the Clover

Another found a slightly shaded spot on a manicured lawn. The water is a man-made reflecting pool on the grounds of Middleton Place, a historical plantation known for its formal gardens.

Alligator Basking with Azaleas
Alligator Basking with Azaleas

Cruising Along

On a mission, or so it would seem, this Alligator crossed from one side of the pond to the other without stopping or diverting. His pace was just slow enough he didn’t make much of a ripple in the water.

Alligator Passing By
Alligator Passing By

After he passed the Cyprus tree the reflections from the budding trees on the far bank colored the water.

Alligator Passing By
Alligator Passing By

Alligator Ramp – Different Position

Different Position for me, that is. This was taken about 15 minutes before and standing ten or so feet closer on the path than yesterday’s post of the Alligator Ramp. The two Alligators and group of turtles hadn’t moved much when that first photo was taken.

Alligators, Turtles hanging out
Alligators, Turtles – click on photo for larger view.

The change in the sun and my angle created a completely different look of the reflections in the water.

Alligator Ramp

The young Alligator in the water circled around a few times but for reasons unknown didn’t make the climb to join his sibling and mom out of the water.

Alligator Mom and Child, with Turtles
Alligator Mom and Child, with Turtles – click photo for larger view

I have seen Alligators crawl over turtles on these ramps and I have seen them eat turtles. Life in the swamp is risky business but for this afternoon this group was getting along.

Below, the young Alligator stayed with his head lifted quite awhile; air exposure is part of how they regulate their temperature.

Alligator Mom and Child
Alligator Mom and Child – compare jowels