Propagation Of The American Alligator In Captivity

Wild caught, captive alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) over a seven-year period exhibited a successful nesting rate of 48 percent in six pens maintained on Rockefeller Refuge. Hatching success in pens (56 percent) closely correlated the 58 percent determined for wild alligators inhabiting natural marsh. Pen construction methods, stocking rates, and maintenance techniques were implemented to simulate natural marsh conditions, thereby encouraging breeding and contributing to the well being of the alligators. Diseases posed no problem during this investigation although fighting did cause some concern during the early stages of the study. Courtship activities, nest construction techniques and maternal duties following egg laying were highly variable among the various alligators under study. Also, courtship behavior was highly ritualized. Behavior of pen reared alligators as compared to wild captured adult alligators were compared. Stocking rates were found to differ greatly. Pen reared adult animals could be maintained in much closer confinement and under less stress when compared to wild captured adults.

JOANEN-106.pdf191.08 KB
Starting page
Ending page