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Old 04-22-11, 12:55 PM   #1
Kurt Erlenbach
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Not a dog, but had to stop for this today

The cars on the left spooked him back into the water. Which would you choose: This guy, or a dog?

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Old 04-22-11, 01:32 PM   #2
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Dayam. Dog. No contest. Ever seen how fast alligators run?
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Old 04-22-11, 01:42 PM   #3
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That's full of win.
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Originally Posted by bragi "However, it's never a good idea to overgeneralize."
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Old 04-22-11, 01:43 PM   #4
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Dayam. Dog. No contest. Ever seen how fast alligators run?
I would have picked the alligators never figured they could run very fast with the short legs.
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Old 04-22-11, 01:44 PM   #5
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Gator
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Old 04-22-11, 01:53 PM   #6
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Dayam. Dog. No contest. Ever seen how fast alligators run?
That was my thought. This one was a good bit farther east than I've seen one before - being close to the ocean, the water here is brackish so there aren't a lot of gators. I wasn't paying much attention, and when I looked up I saw him walking up from the ditch onto the road. I skidded to a stop in the middle of the road (I'm only about 50 feet or so away) and pulled out my camera. I was thinking I ought to back off a bit, but once the cars approached from the other way he headed back into the ditch. I kind of wondered what would have happened if I hadn't looked up when I did. I spent the rest of the ride home watching the ditches pretty carefully.

This road runs about 3 miles north of the space shuttle launch pads.
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Old 04-22-11, 01:54 PM   #7
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Don't know how fast they run---But I bet you would have broken your speed record in the other direction if it even looked at you.
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Old 04-22-11, 01:59 PM   #8
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Sounds like you were on one of your favorites routes towards the shuttle area. Sounds like you need to carry some meat to toss to critters like that! I've seen the way they can leap and how quick they are. You were very smart to back off!!!
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Old 04-22-11, 02:27 PM   #9
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Time to practice gator hops. Start with a hose, to rattlesnake, to dead armadillos, then graduate to gators.
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Old 04-22-11, 02:39 PM   #10
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They can run and leap? I guess it depends on how big and mean the dog looks.
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Old 04-22-11, 02:45 PM   #11
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You know, in looking at the photo, I can tell you that this gator looked a lot bigger in person. My guess is that it's about 8 feet long.
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Old 04-22-11, 04:53 PM   #12
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You know, in looking at the photo, I can tell you that this gator looked a lot bigger in person. My guess is that it's about 8 feet long.

Cool. Ever see gator road kill?
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Old 04-22-11, 05:07 PM   #13
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You know, in looking at the photo, I can tell you that this gator looked a lot bigger in person. My guess is that it's about 8 feet long.
Err . . . cold water shrinkage?

How does bear spray work on those critters?
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Old 04-22-11, 05:23 PM   #14
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My friend, who is a biologist and knows these things, says an alligator can run 25-30 mph though it's unlikely it would have chased after a cyclist. More than likely, he would have dived back into the ditch as he did when the cars came by. A caveat however: the month of May is the peak of gator mating season and they tend to act more aggressively during this time because they're looking for mates. So who knows? Good thing the cars came by and good thing you saw it. I'd be on the lookout along that path over the next few weeks, though, thinking you're not looking for a gator mate yourself. ;-D Be safe out there.
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Old 04-22-11, 05:27 PM   #15
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Sure would like to have some fried gator tail.
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Old 04-22-11, 05:42 PM   #16
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I'm guessing the water bottle trick wouldn't work with him.

Yesterday (on this ride), I had to stop because three of these guys were right on the edge of the road:



They were part of a bachelor herd of about 15.

We stared at one another for a few minutes, then I moved forward a little, and they moved off.
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Old 04-22-11, 05:45 PM   #17
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The only wildlife I'm seeing on rides these days are dead 'possums and raccoons.
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Old 04-22-11, 06:30 PM   #18
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Just like any other WILD critter, those things won't come after a human, will they? I know dogs will. I would rather encounter the gator 'cause I've never seen one.

Also, gators are flatter than dogs so theoretically they would be easier to roll over.

Where's this place at? I want to go there. Other than the gator, it looks like Illinois.

Would I be allowed to catch one of those? I want to cook it and eat it and save the skin. Do you need a fishing license?

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Old 04-22-11, 06:42 PM   #19
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A caveat however: the month of May is the peak of gator mating season and they tend to act more aggressively during this time because they're looking for mates.
This I know. Later into the summer the gators are all lounging in the water. I've never seen a big one on the road like this. That's part of the reason I was a bit concerned with this one. I suspect it probably would have jumped back into the water if I hadn't stopped, but it was heading into the road when I saw it and I was only a few seconds from rolling over it. Passing one closely would only be unsettling; rolling over one would knock you down and likely upset it. Being on the ground beside an angry gator might not end well.
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Old 04-22-11, 06:43 PM   #20
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[video=youtube;jr-ewRKvR6g]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jr-ewRKvR6g[/video]
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Old 04-22-11, 06:48 PM   #21
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[video=youtube;iwThAki0j7U]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iwThAki0j7U&feature=related[/video]
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Old 04-22-11, 06:52 PM   #22
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Cool. Ever see gator road kill?
Actually, yes. Little ones sometimes get run over out there. Road kill in this area tends to get cleaned up quickly. This road goes east-west about three miles north of the space shuttle launch pads. About four miles west is the shuttle landing strip, and the road goes about 200 yards north of the north end of the strip. Dead animals attract big birds, and big birds and landing shuttles (and other planes) don't mix. So there's a NASA crew that cleans up road kill out there, which is probably a kind of rotten job. Once I passed a dead pig heading out - by the time I was heading back, the crew was cleaning it up.
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Old 04-22-11, 07:01 PM   #23
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J
Where's this place at? I want to go there. Other than the gator, it looks like Illinois.

Would I be allowed to catch one of those? I want to cook it and eat it and save the skin. Do you need a fishing license?
This is the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, which is on Merritt Island north of the Kennedy Space Center, east coast central FL. Gators are protected, but there's a season for a few days each year. You have to enter a lottery to get a license.
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Old 04-22-11, 10:33 PM   #24
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Be sure not to launch a snot rocket near one of those things. I've always heard that gators eat boogers.
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Old 04-23-11, 09:21 AM   #25
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I would take the gator. I don't think that they are interested in cyclists. Dogs are. I understand that gators LOVE, LOVE ,LOVE dogs. Now if I could only figure out how to stuff a 7' gator in my bike bag, I would be all set for aggressive pooches. I wouldn't even have to feed the gator.
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