HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) - North Alabama is not the natural habitat for American alligators, so how did they get to the Tennessee Valley?
In the 1970s, alligators ended up on a federal list for threatened animals. In an effort to boost the gator population, the feds took about 50 alligators from their natural habitat and released them at Wheeler Wildlife Refuge.
Around 40 to 50 still live on the refuse, and animal experts say they have found active alligator nests in Wheeler.
Our research also turned up a report of a small alligator along the Tennessee River in Florence back in 1895, nearly a century before the federal gator relocation plan.