photo credit: Pixabay / Southernthing
Alligators have been reported to be moving north according to the Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency (TWRA). They confirmed it recently when a seven-foot alligator was spotted and videoed at the Wolf River in Fayette County.
Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency wrote, “Alligators are naturally expanding their range into Tennessee from the southern border states. TWRA has not stocked any alligators in Tennessee. Alligators expanding into Tennessee is just another species that we must learn to coexist with like many of the other southern states.”
According to TWRC the alligators will be able to survive the cold winters of Tennessee by going into a hibernation mode called brumation. Even when the water freezes they can survive and have learned to adapt by sticking their noses out of the water so when it ices over they can breathe.
The Agency says not to panic though because the number of alligators in Tennessee is very low and they are expanding slowly so it’s highly unlikely you’ll see one anytime soon. However, if you do see a gator TWRA reports alligators are a protected species and killing or capturing one is a violation of the law.
If you do run into one while exploring the great outdoors in Tennessee, just leave it alone.