Palmdale, Florida: Giving Birth to a Gator

The author poses with her tiny charge.

“Push!,” my husband urged. Flashback: Heard that from him often enough with the birthing of my own baby. But this one was entirely less painful. Well, accept for the chomp on my finger.

I had, as instructed, picked off a piece of tough membrane inside the brittle, pre-pierced, chicken egg-like shell. This was more difficult than it had sounded, given the rubber gloves and my shaking hands. It’s not every day a person gets to bring a new baby alligator into this world, and I was nervous.

Alligator Midwife

Volunteer Scott Cooper talked our trough of three “midwives” through the process. Once I could see the baby’s snout, I was to pinch its butt to break off a bit of shell at the bottom so I could push it – gently – out of the top of the shell like some sort of child’s pop-up toy.

Allen Register, whose family owns Gatorama, had walked us, a group Read more of this post