Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Swimming with Gators!

My son Devin and his cousin, Jeff have always LOVED herping! Herpetology is the study of amphibians and reptiles. They have "herped" for years! As they have gotten older they have decided that they are going to take a herping trip every year. Last year they went to Arizona herping and this year they went to Florida! Devin is blessed with a very sweet and understanding wife! Anyway, here are some great pictures from their trip! (I had Devin get on my blog and edit this post since I didn't know the names of the animals! I will put MY notes in parenthesis)
This is a Cuban Tree Frog. (I love his bright color!)
This is an Eastern Garter Snake

This is a Peninsula Ribbonsnake

and a Striped Crayfish snake (I love the color of his belly!)

Same Striped Crayfish Snake, he is a cool snake, and not that common...

A young and nice colored Corn snake

A very pretty juvenile Scarlet Snake

This is a young gopher snake, it was actually found in Utah before we left (oops)

Same Utah Gopher Snake

Same Utah Gopher snake

A Brahminy Blind Snake, this is actually two Brahminy blind Snakes...

A Curly tailed lizard, when they run they curl their tails up over their backs. Makes them look like a scorpion.

A fully grown Green Iguana, it was about 5 feet long including the tail. The biggest one we saw. I climbed up a tree after this guy, he was out on a thin branch about 3o ft up. I climbed as close as I could and then shook the tree branch so he would fall where Jeff was waiting below with a towel to catch him. It was pretty funny and very effective. (I wish we would have had a video camera on them doing this!)

A little closer pic of the old boy.

A pretty green treefrog

A BIG old Florida Softshell turtle. Just be fore he slipped back into the water I ran over and was able to stop him for some pictures (look at his funny snout!)

An eastern Garter Snake

Ring neck Snake (love the bright color!)

A green Iguana, not as big as the other, but more green, and a lot more aggressive, wanted to bite and he was whipping his tail to keep us away.

The same, more green individual

and a close up

Another large Florida Softshell turtle who had a run in with a Gator, you can see where the Gator attempted to take a bite of of him right on the side of the shell!!

(Okay, okay, so this lifeguard station wasn't in the everglades, it was right here in Cali... but they boys actually got in the water with the gators!!! Yes! They ARE nuts!!!)

A pretty big Gator roaming the water. This was taken the night we would wade into the water with flash lights hoping to catch one...

A Gator just relaxing catching some Florida rays

A different and smaller Gator just hanging out

Alligator showing off his big back

And finally after a lot of trying we were able to catch this 8 ft Alligator!

Me and the Gator

Showing his teeth

and again...

After cutting the rope, jumping off his back and letting him lose... The rope is not attached to anything anymore, once he opened his mouth again the piece of rope that we had cut lose slipped right out of his mouth

And one last goodbye
When we first pulled him out of the water and onto the shore he was pretty hard to control. We pulled him up on a nearby dock, and jumped on him to tire him out. We tied his mouth shut so we could get some good shots. He was very strong. (If you cover their eyes they calm down some, this one was about 10 ft long and too heavy for them to pick up. Devin said he was about 3' high when they let him go and he walked away!)

Snorkeling in the Keys and swimming with Gators... it doesn't get any better than that!
Anyway, that's my cute Devin... one crazy boy! Diana and I were glad that he make it home in one piece!!! Too bad they can't make money doing this, they love it so much!


Pedaling said...

that is crazy!
crazy, crazy, crazy!

nice pictures though and that turtle snout was interesting....

Pancake said...

Oh thanks for emailing me to look! YIKES! All those snakes and that big gator... SCARY! I love how Devin climbed the tree to get the iguana down! WOW... so do they go looking for specific snakes and such? WHO taught them how to catch a gator? cause.. I dont thinkk I want to be a part of that learning curve! Go Diana for being such an understanding wife!
Great pictures!!!!

Pancake said...

LOL.. its been too long, you sont want to know how many guesses it took to enter my password... correctly!!! LOL

Cherie said...

I am with Pedaling - Crazy stuff!!
I can't believe they wrestled that big ol gator - Yikes!!!!!

Great pictures though :D

The Kooky Queen--Rachel said...

I have never even heard that term before! And that is SOOOOOOOOOOOO nuts! How can you look at those pictures without grounding them to their rooms!?!?!?!? EEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!! So scary! LOVE the pictures though!

Scrappy Girl said...

I would probably like "herping" about as much as I would like a case of HERPES! LOL!

I always say there is a reason God did not give me boys! Yikes!

Joy For Your Journey said...

Wow!! You aren't kidding he has a very understanding wife!! I can't think of anything that would terrify me more than doing what your son is doing--and the second scariest thing would be to have a husband who thinks it is fun to catch aligators!! At least he has an adventurous spirit!!

Derek & Brittany said...

The Cuban Tree Frog is my favorite!