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American Alligator Distribution, Size, and Hole Occupancy and American Crocodile Juvenile Growth & Survival

photo of an alligator head
Project Investigators: Kenneth G. Rice, Frank J. Mazzotti


The American crocodile is a primarily coastal crocodilian that occurs in parts of Mexico, Central and South America, the Caribbean, and southern Florida. Development to support a rapidly growing human population in Florida along the coast has been the primary factor endangering the United States crocodile population. This loss of habitat principally affected the nesting range of crocodiles, restricting nesting to a small area of northeastern Florida Bay and northern Key Largo by the early 1970's.

The four objectives of this project are:

  1. Design and develop a monitoring program for relative distribution, size (condition), nesting and hole occupancy rates of the American alligator in response to Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP) projects as specified in the Monitoring and Assessment Plan (MAP). The monitoring program and procedures developed will provide the baseline for future comparisons and an effective means for evaluating restoration success for the American alligator in the Greater Everglades ecosystem.
  2. Monitor changes in alligator populations due to restoration over short (body condition), medium (distribution, hole occupancy) and long (nesting) temporal and spatial scales.
  3. Design and develop a monitoring program for growth and survival of crocodiles in areas that will be affected by CERP projects.
  4. Conduct surveys for crocodiles as expressed in the MAP. Monitoring surveys will be separated into subtasks based on geographic area. In all areas, crocodile surveys and monitoring will include nesting effort and success and will focus on growth and survival of juvenile crocodiles.

Scope of Work




Journal Articles


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Script last updated: 23 October 2018 @ 12:03 PM by THF. Record creator: BJM. Record last updated by: KP.