Weekly Photo Challenge: Love
It doesn’t take much to find love on an excursion into the natural world — which is why I escape to its beauty as much as humanly possible.
We’re approaching breeding season for our gators (these were scenes of last year’s cuddles — a very recent mom and dad). Interestingly, recent studies have shown that up to 70 percent of alligator females remained with their partner — often for many years.
Breeding begins in the spring (mid-April through May), and you can hear their loud bellows throughout the swamps — calls used to attract mates and to warn off other males. While (like all wildlife) gators don’t want to bother humans, the mating season isn’t the time to push your luck — aggression is at a higher level, and they may become more territorial. It’s always wise to be aware of the season. Alligator courtship is complex — vocalizations, head-slapping on the water’s surface, body posturing, snout and back rubbing, bubble blowing, and pheromone (scent) signals all play into the process.