are not normally aggressive except during mating season. They
are known to love and seek out special treats like dog,
chicken and marshmallows, but for the most part they
stay clear of humans.
is an exception to every rule, of course. One river rat
was explaining to me and Judy why he had to go to the hospital
one night to have some 'gator teeth removed from his hand.
It was a sad, sad
story. He had stopped his airboat in Middlefield very late
one dark night. He was minding his own business and bailing
some water out of his boat when a 'gator, attracted by
the splashing, just jumped up and bit him on the hand!
It was a ferocious
struggle, but he finally managed to repel the beast and
drive himself to the hospital.
OK, it wasn't so
much a sad story as a sorry one. No one who knows 'gators
(or this particular river rat) believes it for a second.
That 'gator wasn't trying to get into the boat, he was
trying to get out!
Some of us think
our river rat could have come up with a better explanation
than that, but that's his story and he's sticking with