Orange Hill Gator Farm welcomes some new snappy friends
DOTHAN, Ala. (WTVY) -
It’s been an exciting few weeks for Orange Hill Gator Farm as 72 gator eggs were collected and brought into the world.
Home to more than 500 alligators, orange hill is adding some new snappy friends.
“Its also thrilling you get to see this new life all of a sudden come out of an egg like you know you don’t really get to see that very often,” Camille Gonzalez, Orange Hill Gator Farm employee said.
Once a year, the female gators will build a huge mound out of their surroundings and then lay their eggs. After a month, that’s when the Orange Hill Gator Farm team comes in to help.
“The incubation period for the alligators is 62 days but we usually let them sit in there for about a month. Then we will go over and steal the eggs out of the nest because we can do a better job of incubating the eggs out and then protecting the babies when they hatch out,” Chris Ellis, owner/operator of Orange Hill Gator Farm said.
Opening the egg and helping the baby gators hatch is more difficult than what you might think.
“It’s scary when you first start because the egg is fragile and you don’t want to drop them. That’s the first thing you’re instinctively thinking cause if that sucker comes out of that egg and you’re not prepared like he’s falling to the ground,” Gonzalez said.
But the eggs aren’t the only new addition to the farm, they have added 3 coyotes.
“People see them briefly as they run across the road, they may hear them howling in the woods or wherever at night time but this is an opportunity for people to see them up close, especially the kids. To see what they look like and they are pretty cool creatures they’re apart of our ecosystem too,” Ellis said.
Visitors not only get to experience animals up close but Chris and his team provide them with something more.
“This is what I’m here to do is to teach people about how important animals are. Every single one of them has different care, they have to feed different, they have their babies different, it’s all about what they offer. We all have a revolving door that has to do with the planet and if we help them they help us,” Gonzalez said.
For more information on Orange Hill Gator Farm you can visit: https://debbie7559.wixsite.com/orangehillgatorfarm?fbclid=IwAR0D1iUNGfrIVlw0gP1M_ibSkVW8HS6umifhw9XDRoa4UkCyBB6xeRx-52U
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