Alligator Hunting Roswell NM

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Fort Stanton
(505) 627-0212
1717 West Second ST
Roswell, NM
Other Activties
Biking; Camping; Fishing; Hiking; Horseback Riding; Hunting; Interpretive Programs; Picnicking

Haystack Mountain Ohv Recreation Area
(505) 627-0272
2909 Well Second ST
Roswell, NM
Other Activties
Camping; Hunting; Off Highway Vehicle

Fort Stanton Recreation Area
(505) 627-0272
2909 W. Second Street
Roswell, NM
Other Activties
Biking; Camping; Hiking; Historic & Cultural Site; Horseback Riding; Hunting; Interpretive Programs; Wildlife Viewing

Covey`s Gun Shop
(505) 623-6565
700 North Main Street
Roswell, NM
 
Wild Rivers Recreation Area
(505) 758-8851
226 Cruz Alta Road
Taos, NM
Other Activties
Auto Touring; Biking; Fishing; Hiking; Hunting; Wildlife Viewing

Organ Mountains Recreation Area
(505) 627-0272
2909 Well Second ST
Roswell, NM
Other Activties
Auto Touring; Biking; Camping; Hiking; Horseback Riding; Hunting; Picnicking; Wildlife Viewing

Bitter Lake National Wildlife Refuge
(505) 622-6755
4065 Bitter Lake Road
Roswell, NM
Other Activties
Auto Touring; Hiking; Hunting; Interpretive Programs; Visitor Center; Wildlife Viewing

Bitter Lake National Wildlife Refuge
(575) 622-6755
4065 Bitter Lake Road Roswell
Roswell, NM
 
Gila Lower Box Canyon
(505) 525-4300
1800 Marquess Street
Las Cruces, NM
Other Activties
Camping; Fishing; Hiking; Hunting; Wildlife Viewing

Cibola National Forest
(505) 346-3900
2113 Osuna Road
Albuquerque, NM
Other Activties
Auto Touring; Biking; Camping; Fishing; Hiking; Historic & Cultural Site; Horseback Riding; Hunting; Interpretive Programs; Off Highway Vehicle; Picnicking; Recreational Vehicles; Visitor Center; Wildlife Viewing

Alligator Hunting: Big Business Across the South

Stretched taut, the rope led into the dark water, holding a prehistoric animal in an extremely bad mood at the other end.

The guide snatched the cord with a rake-like pole and pulled it toward the flatboat. Grabbing the rope, he pulled with all his might. Tangled in the aquatic vegetation, the prehistoric reptile erupted from the murk, snapping at anything it could find. Flinging vegetation and spray, the gator attempts a "death roll." Unable to chew, alligators snap their heads and roll repeatedly to rip prey apart with their razor teeth or destroy enemies. The powerful tail, almost as dangerous as the toothy jaws, whipped the black water into froth.

"Aim for the head between the eyes," the guide shouted to the guest who drew his .357 revolver. "Gators have small brains and it takes a well-placed shot to kill them. Even after they die, their nervous systems still cause them to writhe for a long time."

When the Spanish explorers first began to trek across Florida and into North America about 500 years ago, they discovered "dragons," dubbing these giant hard-to-kill toothy reptiles, "El Lagarto," or "the lizard." Over the centuries, English-speaking people corrupted the Spanish phrase into "alligator," known to scientists as "Alligator mississippiensis."

Once fully protected, alligators made a remarkable comeback in the last 40 years. They became so numerous that they caused problems in many states that now allow strictly managed hunting opportunities. Alligators range from Texas to North Carolina and as far north as eastern Oklahoma, southern Arkansas and parts of Tennessee. Living more than 50 years, alligators can grow to more than 14 feet long and can weigh more than 1,000 pounds. E. A. McIlhenny of the Tabasco pepper sauce fame claimed to have killed a 19-foot, 2-inch alligator on Marsh Island, Louisiana, early in the 20th century, but that length remains in dispute among alligator biologists. The largest Florida alligator on record measured 17 feet, 5 inches long.

Possessing impressive teeth and large jaws capable of crushing bone, alligators look fierce and can take down an adult deer. They occasionally bite or even kill humans, but generally act timid toward people. However, settlers along the Gulf Coast considered them vermin and attempted to eradicate alligators, shooting them on sight for centuries. Fortunately, they usually lived in isolated, swampy places or nearly inaccessible marshes. Even after centuries of "target practice," alligators numbered in the millions along the Gulf Coast until after World War I. In the 1920s, products made from alligator leather became chic.

A few intrepid Louisiana gator hunters walked those marshes with long hooked poles. When one located "gator holes," or a wallowed out depression in the marsh, he probed it with his poles. If he hit an alligator, the trapper thrust the hooked end into the wallow and attempted to snag the beast at the bottom. After pulling up a snagged alligator, the trapper...

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