Florida man spots five-foot-long alligator in a tree

A Cape Coral, Florida, man says he observed an alligator in a tree.

Ronald Saracino told WINK: "I saw something in a tree, at first I thought maybe it was a lizard.

"The more I looked at it, the more I thought it was actually probably a 5-foot gator."

"I know people are not going to believe it, but I 100 per cent believe it was a gator."

Saracino saw the apparent alligator not far from Viscaya Parkway and 9th Lane, the TV station said.

Officials with Florida Fish and Wildlife think it was fairly likely an alligator, according to WINK.

Calusa Nature Center educator Amy Sera told the news outlet: "I've seen pictures of crocodiles doing that behavior. It gives them a little bit better view of their territory.

"Cold blooded animals get their energy from the sun and the warmth. So, they are more active in the summer."

A study looked at crocodiles and alligators and their tree-climbing, DailyMail.com reported in 2014. Both alligators and crocodiles are crocodilians.

The University of Tennessee at Knoxville said in a 2014 release about the study: 'The smaller crocodiles were able to climb higher and further than the larger ones.

"Some species were observed climbing as far as four meters high in a tree and five meters down a branch."

It quoted the study's authors as writing: "The most frequent observations of tree-basking were in areas where there were few places to bask on the ground, implying that the individuals needed alternatives for regulating their body temperature.

"Likewise, their wary nature suggests that climbing leads to improved site surveillance of potential threats and prey."

- Daily Mail

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