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Feb 25th, 2011, 05:22 AM
  #1
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Alligators

Where is the best place to see Alligators around Charleston?

We don't want to paddle a boat in the swamps with them, but would like to see them in a relatively natural habitat.

Any good ideas?
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Feb 25th, 2011, 06:27 AM
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http://www.dreamcharleston.com/art-a...harleston.html

About 20 years ago on one of our many trips to the Charleston area, we were visiting the gardens at Magnolia Plantation. While we were perfectly safely enclosed with fencing, we did see alligators sunning themselves on a nearby sandbar on the estuary the plantation sits on. My then 2 year old daughter was fascinated. The link above doesn't go into detail, but it sounds like this happens quite a bit.
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Feb 25th, 2011, 07:20 AM
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You can also see them in summer from a carriage ride through Middleton rice paddies. You don't say when you plan to visit. They're asleep right now.
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Feb 25th, 2011, 07:50 AM
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I will be in Charleston the middle of March, will they be 'awake' then? Sorry if this sounds stupid but I have never seen one in their natural habitat, and where I come from the largest things we see in the water that crawl are , well, crabs.
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Feb 25th, 2011, 08:15 AM
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Take a stick with you, and remember to zig zag when you run, as they can only run straight.
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Feb 25th, 2011, 08:24 AM
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Lol aliska,

beba, it depends on the weather. They wake up when it gets warm and we've had some warm days. Your best bet is to just call and ask if they're out. You can also google SC DNR and ask them questions. They really are the experts, I'm not.

They're easy to see in summer.
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Feb 25th, 2011, 02:32 PM
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We visit Kiawah Island at the end of March each year. When it gets warm out mid-day, alligators are easy to spot around the little ponds. You could drive out there (about 30-40 minutes from Charleston) and rent bikes and look for gators near the wonderful bike trails.
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Feb 25th, 2011, 04:33 PM
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Kiawah is gated. You can't go in unless you rent there. And yeah, they are just waking up. Eyeballs only.

But understand: they look like logs.
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Feb 27th, 2011, 06:19 AM
  #9
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We will be there March 14 to March 17 ~ think they'll be awake then? Would love to see more than eyeballs
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Feb 27th, 2011, 04:11 PM
  #10
 
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Thanks suewoo..not sure I really want to see one up close and personal, but I guess it would be a hilight of the trip if I did see one. Can't imagine taking a bike tour to see one near the trail as that sounds terrible to me! I can imagine them grabbing my foot as I went flying by on the bike!

aliska..wouldn't me running zig zag and him (the alligator) running straight make him catch up to me sooner? ha ha I think I need to rethink looking for alligators as a pasttime. Maybe shopping is a better use of my time.
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Feb 28th, 2011, 08:00 AM
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wrenwood,

I haven't seen any yet. They wake up when the water warms up. You have to look for them though. They don't always sit out on the bank like the turtles do.

beba,

Shopping is good!
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Feb 28th, 2011, 12:20 PM
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Beba, instead of shopping, if you concentrate on the alligator, maybe you can get a purse or some shoes made? Just kidding.

Personally, I have no experience outrunning a gator (thank goodness!), can only repeat what I have read. I guess if you run zig zag, maybe the alligator will think you are looney tunes and therefore not good to eat? Just supposing.
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Feb 28th, 2011, 12:35 PM
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Gators are cross-eyed so the thinking is that running zig-zagged gets them dizzy and they quit chasing. Not sure if its urban legend. They generally don't chase people unless they are provoked or too used to human contact (ie being fed, etc).
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Feb 28th, 2011, 02:15 PM
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LOL, that's true. But I am certain that every one here has way too much sense to provoke a gator with say, a golf club.
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Feb 28th, 2011, 03:44 PM
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Oh and beba, if you like shopping go to Bob Ellis on King Street! Shoes......
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Feb 28th, 2011, 04:53 PM
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Oh, I do like shopping too, and shoes , and purses would be a lovely pasttime. I was thinking about buying a purse before I left but decided to wait until I got there to get something summery instead of black, the staple around here for the last 5 months or so! Goes well with snow, you know. ha ha

As for the alligators and running zig zag, I don't know if I want to challenge that theory so think I will just look at them from afar.
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Mar 9th, 2011, 08:23 PM
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We saw one sunning right off the pathway at Middleton Plantation back in October. We almost walked right by him. He was about 4-5 feet long and I got several photos of him. Afterwards I was a little shaken that I hadn't just seen him and run away!
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Mar 12th, 2011, 05:30 PM
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Alligators are not naturally aggressive toward humans. Don't dangle your hands or feet in a pond where you might be mistaken for food. Otherwise, if you don't bother the alligator, he won't bother you.
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Mar 20th, 2011, 03:50 PM
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My friend kiawahvilla is correct, as always. She is so smart! But apparently they are out. Another friend saw a 12 foot gater yesterday.
Jenn, 5 foot? He's a baby. And people aren't food.
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