Only in Florida: Large Alligator Filmed Strolling Through Publix Parking Lot
It doesn't get more Florida than the scene Luke Vidal managed to capture last Friday morning.
"Just a gator crossing the grocery store parking lot…" Vidal wrote alongside the now viral video on Facebook.
This Pub Sub loving gator is just one of many crocodilian encounters to occur in recent weeks. According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), it's likely due to the onset of mating season, which takes place in May and June. Though it might seem early, courtship starts in early April, which means that Florida's one million alligators have already begun looking for love.
Warmer weather also increases an alligator's metabolism, which means they're on the hunt for prey as well. According to FWC, it also means you'll see more of them basking in the sun in order to regulate their body temperature.
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The increased alligator activity over the next few months can lead to more frequent run-ins with humans. Wildlife officials urge everyone to be careful and pay close attention when spending time around fresh or brackish water. Keep in mind that alligators are most active between dusk and dawn.
If you do come across one, be sure to give it a wide berth and let it go about its business.
In the rare instance that you become concerned about an alligator, call FWC's toll-free Nuisance Alligator Hotline at 866-392-4286.