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Old 05-13-2016, 07:04 PM   #21
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Round this neck of the woods And I was quite serious when I said it could have been made by a very large turtle....
Crocodiles climb trees!-dscf8967.jpg
They carry their shells real low!
This is a fairly small one.

Better yet...... a bear trail!

OR a repeating fishermans trail going in and out where the getting's good!

OR Kids rolling inner tubes in for a float.

OR geese going in and out to feed in the grass.
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Old 05-26-2016, 01:18 PM   #22
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Darn xfoot, due to your good sleuthing we just lost a trail of storytelling that could have gone on forever! You know we have some good storytellers here don't you? Well beyond that I think you did a good service to those living with these creatures. Now kids you stay back from the river bank OK?
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Old 06-11-2016, 09:59 PM   #23
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I think the first question should have been, where did Xfoot take the photo? Despite Hava's remarkable hillbilly imitation, she doesn't hail from alligator country. We have them thar snapping turtles round here, tho, and they can be real, real ornery.

My thought seeing the track was alligator, assuming you were from the South, esp if Florida. I wouldn't go tubing in that river, with or without my cooler! My poor little toes could get nibbled...
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Old 03-27-2017, 12:29 AM   #24
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^ The photo was taken in TX, up in the very NW corner of alligator range...

There actually have been a very few alligators spotted here periodically - but so rarely that they make the news when they do!

And I have yet to actually see one anywhere in this stretch of the river. So, it's still a pretty long shot for there to be any here...

HOWEVER, the plot thickens today!

I was walking along a peninsula just on the opposite side of the river from where I had seen the possible alligator slide last year...when I looked into the edge of the tiny forest there and saw these big dens!

Now, the burrow on the left is pretty large, in particular. I'm not sure what other riparian animal could have made it? Any ideas? It seems with river creatures, they are either fairly small, or large gators - with not a whole lot in between?

For reference, here are a few other articles with pics I found of alligator burrows - that resemble what I saw in both appearance and description:
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An alligator will also excavate soil and mud from the bank of a water body to create a burrow, which may be used for hiding, especially during the winter months when they must lay still under the freezing or near-freezing effect of the cold, and ideal domicile for a mother and her brood. Ideally, a burrow includes a tunnel which may rise above the water's surface to keep its resident from drowning. A burrow may be extensive - 10ft/ 3m to 16.4ft/ 5m - and have multiple rooms

This burrow complex in a canal in central Florida, photographed during a dry season at low water level, was constructed under tree roots. While erosion may have revealed the roots, the potential of the site has been exploited into a multi-entry construction, the roots trusses for reinforcement.
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See those two big holes just above the shoreline of this freshwater pond? Those are alligator dens, large burrows that benefit them in many ways. And just to prove this point, these two dens have a pair of alligators hanging out at their entrances. Both alligators are only about 1 meter (3.3 feet) long, though, which means they’re way too small to have been the alligators that made these dens.

notice the mismatch in sizes of the alligators compared to the den entrances. The dens are much too large for their denizens, implying that these are not their original makers, but instead are secondary occupiers, reusing these dens. I was also surprised to see five alligators – all about the same size – sharing dens.

Regardless, this shows that once a den is made, it can be used by many alligators of varying sizes, over more than a decade, and possibly over generations.
The only atypical part with these dens is that they were elevated probably a total of ~10' up a stepped bank from river level down along a very high and narrow drainage inlet, that is usually dry. So, any gators would have to take a bit of a hike just to get in and out of the water. Whereas most of the gator dens pictured on the internet are basically right down by the water's edge..

Soooo...do you think these are gator dens, or something else?
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Old 03-29-2017, 11:45 PM   #25
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They are certainly something!! Were there any footprints in the loose soil? Although I'm not sure I'd go too close to see.
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Old 03-30-2017, 05:00 PM   #26
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They are certainly something!! Were there any footprints in the loose soil? Although I'm not sure I'd go too close to see.
No, but notice how there's no plant growth or even any leaf litter right in front of the holes. Whereas there are fallen leaves just to the sides of them?

That seems to indicate that either something is crawling in and out of the dens - or maybe water is draining out of them? Although you'd think water would be draining down the entire slope there - and not just out of the holes alone?

Now I didn't get too close (for obvious reasons, lol), but the ground was also dry, and that could be one reason why no tracks were visible?

Or...the den could simply be uninhabited?


And on further thought, I do think it could still be a gator den atypically located higher up because the tree line doesn't go down to the water's edge around there - and I think the ground is also much harder lower down (rocky, almost to limestone bedrock). So, it would probably be too hard to dig a burrow down at the river level.

So although normally, their first choice would probably be down at the water...a higher location could have simply been the best 'Plan B' option available under their given circumstances there?
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