|St. Augustine Alligator Farm|
When ever we go on a trip, I begin to prepare Ephraim by ordering a variety of tourist maps, fliers and pamphlets for him to peruse. He will often carry the maps of the cities around for days planning his adventures. We make a list of locations he wants to visit and try to narrow them down to his favorites
From the time he opened his Sightseeing Book for St. Augustine and saw the “long beaked alligator” picture, he was hooked. He was desperate to see this creature in real life and it became the top priority for trip.
As a former resident of St. Augustine, I honestly could not think of anything more horrible than spending a few hours baking in the heat looking at these most boring of creatures. However, there was no convincing Eph that the alligators in our home zoo are just the same, so off we trekked last Thursday morning to the St. Augustine Alligator Farm.
The price for the alligator farm is quite steep, $21.95 for adults and $10.95 for children. For basically what amounts to a small zoo full of birds and alligators, I think there would be significantly more traffic into the park if the prices were less. We did use our AAA discount, which saved about $7.00 but I still think the prices are a bit high.
When you first walk into the park, there is a fake alligator sitting off to the side. As Ephraim walked past, I heard a loud shriek and realized that he actually thought the creature was real. That definitely set the mood for more fun and excitement.
The next fun treat we had was that they appeared to be filming some type of program where they were attempting to capture a female alligator. It was quite the show. They chased her all over the enclosure while the other alligators hissed and chomped about. We got a good view through one of the glass windows and both kids were quite entertained by the free show. They never did tell us what or why they were trying to catch her, but it ended when they put her on a wooden gurney and hauled her away.
|Look past the kids to see the capture!|
After that we traveled along the the boardwalks looking at all of the sleeping, lazy creatures. They did not keep Ephraim’s attention as he ran to each glass enclosure, stared at the creature for 2 seconds and ran along. Trying my best to make it educational, I would read the name of the animal and try to tell him about it’s size and weight, but he had lost interest. They all were pretty much the same to him and he was on a quest to find the one with “the long beak.”
Not to long into the journey did we find the Indian Gharial sitting right next to the window, with his beak open and looking quite photogenic. I actually think he new we were there just to see him and was poised waiting for us. Ephraim willingly posed for a quick picture and off he went.
|Ephraim & The Long Beak|
We ended our tour by watching the Alligator Feeding Show. The alligator keeper fed large frozen rats to several of the creatures. She said she actually knew them by name, but I am not sure how that is even possible. Neither of kids found the feeding show as interesting as the spontaneous capture we had seen earlier in the day. Maybe they should rethink their show schedule.
|LuLu Rides the Alligator|