Video courtesy of CNN
NORTH CAROLINA (KRON) — Ever wonder how alligators deal with frigid temperatures? Turns out they stick their noses through the ice to survive.
George Howard works at the Shallotte River Swamp Park in Wilmington, North Carolina.
As he takes his hammer to the ice, he explains he is not trying to free the gators. He just wants to make them more comfortable while they wait out the cold.
“It’s interesting to see them poke their noses up and are able to breathe and be perfectly fine so they’re doing this as a mechanism so that if it freezes over they can still breathe but just an absolute amazing survival technique,” Howard said.
“These guys are diehard just amazing survivors and this is just one more example of that,” he said.
The park has 12 gators rescued from captivity now hibernating in the ice.
Howard says they lower their body temperature and metabolism under water to survive.
When he first came to check on the gators after it snowed, he wasn’t quite sure what to think.
“I looked around and I was like ‘hmmm what is that poking up out of the water?’ They almost look like cypress trees a little bit from afar. And then I realized as I saw some teeth that oh my gosh these guys are poking their heads up out of the water. And it made sense immediately why they were doing it.”
The ice in finally beginning to melt away, and soon these guys will be saying ‘see ya later alligator’ to hibernation and the cold temps.
CNN contributed to this article
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