Gator with dinner – maybe…

Alligator with Florida Red-bellied TurtleApril 22:  This afternoon’s visit to Green Cay was primarily to check for migrant warblers, but most of those reported in the past few days were gone and it was quiet except for just a few – three Blackpolls, two Cape Mays, and a Worm-eating were all that I could find – all of them in the trees by the entrance. The most interesting sight actually turned out to be a large alligator that had grabbed a Florida Red-bellied Turtle in the water, carried it ashore, and was, or so it seemed, attempting to make a meal of it but not succeeding. It tossed the turtle in the air, caught it again, dropped it, grabbed it again, clamped down on it repeatedly, and, still not having eaten any dinner, was still entertaining a small crowd in this manner when I left. It seems like an alligator could capture a turtle anytime it wanted, but in all the years I have observed gators here in Florida, I have never seen this phenomenon before. Also…I have no idea what that gross black thing hanging out of the gator’s mouth is.

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