Video shows alligators surviving frozen water by keeping nostrils in the air

Randolph Lopez
January 10, 2018

The American alligator can survive water temperatures of negative 40 degrees and can hold their breath for one to 24 hours, the park said in a blog post.

Chances are you've been freezing lately if you're in the East Coast as it's been brutal here these last couple of days. Alive or not, seeing a motionless alligator's snout popping out of a frozen over pond looks more like a scene out of a B-grade horror film than a natural occurrence.

Videos showing the alligators "just hanging out in the water", have garnered tens of thousands of views since they were published over the weekend.

"Just shows you how smart they are, and how unbelievable it is to see them do this exact survival technique, no matter how horrific it looks to us humans", park owner Linda McMullan wrote on Facebook.

"When alligators aren't sunbathing, they'll spend the other half of their life in water". Their metabolism slows down in the cold conditions and they go into a lethargic state.

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Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published broadcast rewritten or redistributed

Once it becomes warm and the ice melts, the creatures thermoregulate their body temperatures to their regular state.

The park has 12 gators rescued from captivity now hibernating in the ice. This includes two alligators that were used as "guard animals" by N.C. drug dealers.

Experts from the Shallotte River Swamp Park explained how it's all possible.

"Just shows you how smart they are, and how wonderful it is to see them do this exact survival technique, no matter how horrific it looks to us humans", posted Linda McMullan on Facebook.

"Obviously, that is not optimal, being frozen like that", he said. Turns out they stick their noses through the ice to survive. That's four counties away from Charlotte. "They are trying to conserve energy to maintain body temperature". Most are found in the southeastern corner of the state.

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