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Topic: Alligator Range & Habitat

I observed on the range map of this site that there are alligators verified in  anumber of counties that I previously thought were well out of their range, for example Greene and Mississippi counties.

Is there someplace where I can obtain more information about these specific county records?  Are they old records (e.g. 19th century) or are they farily more recent.  Do they represent a population or simply individuals that were on a "walkabout"?

I would tend to think that these verfied sightings in the more northerly counties are flukes rather than a sign of an established population.  Thanks for any clarification.

Mike the Gator

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Re: Alligator Range & Habitat

Have you checked out Dr. Trauth's book Amphibians and Reptiles of Arkansas? The map in that book, I think and someone can correct me on this, shows all the verified locations of Allitators in Arkansas.

Tyler

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Re: Alligator Range & Habitat

Several range maps on this website have been updated since Trauth, et. al., but I believe the Alligator map is the same.  Mississippi county has at least 4 vouchers; Greene has at least 1.

Potential ranges are based primarily on Conant and Collins.  All in all, I've tried to keep the maps as accurate and up-to-date as possible using a compilation of reliable sources.

Kory Roberts: Email | Facebook | Flickr | YouTube

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Re: Alligator Range & Habitat

Published range maps can pose a bit of a challenge, especially within states such as Arkansas, where state officials have been re-introducing species of concern, like the American alligator, into areas where the original populations have long been extirpated, but still harbor habitat suitable to support a population. This makes it possible for some species to appear in areas for which the most currently published literature indicating range data indicates null for that particular species. This can hold especially true within areas of the historical range of a species, where re-introduction projects often take place when the habitat is believed to be suitable enough to support a population

Best regards,

Jeff

Jeff Snodgres
University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
snodgresjeffreys@uams.edu
501.744.2553

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Re: Alligator Range & Habitat

Thanks for the answers.  No range map is perfect (nor can it be)  However,  I find the range maps here to be excellent by indicating that there is a "verified" sighting in a county.  I wish more states had the county maps like that on their websites.

state officials have been re-introducing species of concern, like the American alligator, into areas where the original populations have long been extirpated, but still harbor habitat suitable to support a population.

I was aware that this was occuring, especially with black bears.  Some of your bears are now our bears  lol   With alligators I thought the activity was confined more or less to the border counties with Louisiana.  Has game & fish been making re-introductions north of the Arkansas River in recent years?