If you are a wildlife enthusiast, you may have come across the alligator. They live near freshwater bodies, including rivers, swamps, marshes, and lakes.
You won’t find them in saltwater because they lack salt glands to withstand a salty environment. These creatures are semi-aquatic and can therefore also live on land.
Most adult alligators living in the wild are typically around 8 feet, with juveniles measuring about 3 feet.
However, they may grow up to 12 feet or more and weigh over 1000lbs.
The two most common types include the American alligator and the Chinese alligator. The American alligator is typically found in specific regions of the US, while the latter inhabits some provinces of China.
People always confuse an alligator for a crocodile. A crocodile has a short fat snout, while an alligator has a long narrow snout.
Are Alligators Harmful To Humans?
Alligators exist for three primary purposes; to eat, mate and reproduce. They prey on rabbits, rodents, snakes, fish, and birds.
Alligators rarely attack humans but won’t back out if provoked or given an open invitation to attack. Having these reptiles in your pond endangers your kids and pets.
The 75 sharp razor teeth they contain can inflict severe damage to their victims, causing punctures, lacerations, or abrasions.
Alligators are more ferocious during mating season. You want to be extra-cautious around this time.
5 Ways to Get Rid of Alligators in A Pond
Getting rid of alligators in a pond involves a combination of both preventive and control measures, as discussed below.
Be aware that alligators are vicious animals, and trapping them could endanger your life. Use these methods at your own risk. Always consider calling professional services if you are in doubt.
1. Eliminate Alligator Attractants
An infestation of alligators in your pond suggests they must have spotted something they are looking for.
Probably, they have spotted a habitable environment and easy food.
The first thing you want to do is eliminate all food leftovers in your yard. Get rid of all garbage lying freely in the open in or around the yard or pond area.
If you have a backyard pond, use a pond cover to prevent the gators from finding their way in. You can purchase these from a trusted local supplier or online.
2. Install A Safety Glass Fence
A well-built and sturdy glass fence is of the essence if you want to keep alligators out of your property and, by extension, your pond.
It prevents the alligators from finding a way into your property and keeps you and your kids safe.
If a glass fence isn’t readily available, you could also try installing other fence types, such as
- Aluminum, wood, or concrete fence
- Single strand electric fence
- Chain link fence
3. Use Alligator Traps
1.1. Fish Hook Traps
Another way to eliminate alligators in your pond is using alligator bait traps. Ideally, a food bait would work best.
Hook the bait in a branch or pole above the water at two feet. Have a rope fixed to the hook to pull out the alligator once it gets hooked.
Before you consider using this bait trap, check with your local wildlife department to confirm whether a bait trap is allowed. Most states do not allow trapping an alligator by this method because of the likelihood of it getting injured.
You may also need a permit to trap them around your property, irrespective of the method.
1.2. Self-Locking Snare
An alternative to a bait trap is using a self-locking snare.
It’s safer than the bait trap and highly recommended.
All one needs to do is place the snare where the alligator frequents in search of food.
Once the alligator inserts its head into the snare, the self-lock gets triggered, trapping the reptile. For the best results, try to study its behavior to get things right.
Knowing when the alligator comes around searching for food will be an added advantage.
4. Avoid Feeding The Alligator
We don’t advise feeding an alligator around your pond or surroundings, even if you are tempted.
Giving them something to eat makes them associate humans with food, thus losing their natural wariness around people.
Feeding an alligator accidentally or intentionally endangers you or kids within your property, something you don’t want to risk doing.
5. Employ Professional Services
Dealing with the wild on your property can be a daunting affair unless well-equipped.
If the alligators have made your pond their home, you want to seek professional services to dispose of them.
Several states in the US have programs meant to support gardeners having trouble with alligators. Check your local area for such professional services and see whether they could help.
Getting rid of alligators in a pond calls for expertise, courage, and, more importantly, safety on your part.
As a preventive measure, eliminate all alligator attractants in your pond or backyard to prevent the reptiles from scavenging for food within your property.
You could also trap them with bait or use self-locking snares.
Remember to obtain a permit for this exercise to avoid getting in trouble with the law.