This was my first time seeing the Everglades – a fascinating adventure I shall never forget! There’s always an image in our minds of places we have heard about and seen on TV, in movies or pictures, but when you are surrounded with 3D, the actual sights and sounds of a place where you have never been, it can be quite different than imagined.
I didn’t expect to see so many alligators, I spotted one even before entering the Everglades National Park at the side of the road in a little stream. I thought we would have to keep our eyes peeled and search for them, but gators were crawling (and swimming) everywhere! I was in awe of this vast swampland, swarming with gators, turtles and beautiful birds.
Looking below from an observation tower, these guys look like babies but they are actually six to eight feet long. At times, it felt surreal – this is not a zoo – this is the wilderness!
Walking along a path, I came across this BIG fellow sunning himself, I decided not to disturb him and went back the other way!
This is a newly acquainted couple getting to know each other and will soon be starting a family. The dad will take off before the children are born leaving mom as a single parent, who will look after the tots for up to two years (the only reptiles who look after their offspring – except dad who will eat them).
There were babies with their mom close by and a little one on her back.
Our tour guide, Jose told us that we came at the right time of year. People who come in the summer months expecting to see alligators will be disappointed. Since gators are cold-blooded, it is too hot for them and so they go deeper in the water and into little hideouts. Check out Jean’s account of this excursion and her beautiful photos!