Disclaimer: This article is for educational and informative purposes.
A video of a Florida man hand-feeding an alligator while sitting chest-deep in water has gone viral on social media. The video, posted by @onlyinfloridaa on Instagram, has garnered over 25,000 likes.
FWC has approximated that the state has 1.3 million alligators of all sizes residing across its 67 counties, which provides about 6.7 million acres of suitable wetland habitats for these animals.
The caption of the video reads, "Florida man is gonna Florida man." In the video, a man donning a white hat and a woman dressed in a red shirt can be seen waving a piece of bread as the alligator swims closer. He drops the food into the alligator's mouth and pats it under the mouth before it swims away. The man tries to feed the alligator another piece of food.
The video generated more than 1,000 comments from viewers, some of whom expressed concern about the risks associated with feeding wild alligators. Some viewers believe that feeding alligators could lead to them associating humans with food and no longer being afraid of them. Others were concerned about the location of the water they were sitting in.
The video was credited to @daddyog1, who has posted several close encounter clips with alligators on his TikTok account. The date and location of the video are unknown.
According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife (FWC), feeding wild alligators is illegal in Florida. The FWC has warned that when alligators are fed, they can lose their natural wariness and instead associate humans with the availability of food, creating a dangerous situation for humans and alligators.
FWC further states that alligator mating season generally occurs between May and June, with courtship starting in early April.
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