PALMDALE, Fla., (Aug. 2, 2021) – Tickets are now available for Florida’s snappiest event, Gatorama’s 18th Annual Alligator Hatching Festival scheduled Aug. 21 – 29 with the exception of Tuesday and Wednesday that week. Baby alligators are chirping, grunting, and snapping out of their shells this time of year and festival attendees can hold and hatch alligator eggs in their hands. The family-friendly festival takes place at the animal park located at 10665 U.S. Highway 27 in Palmdale.
“This is a record-breaking year for egg production even though several alligator nests experienced flooding in many areas of the state,” said Gatorama co-owner Allen Register. During the seven-day festival, the attraction and working alligator farm will welcome more than 5,000 baby alligators.
“Conserving and sustaining all crocodilians is not just something we talk about. It is our family’s way of life. Daily, we educate visitors on the benefit of wetlands, alligator and crocodile populations in Florida and worldwide, and contribute regularly to crocodile conservation programs,” Register added.
Hatching presentations will educate attendees about the history of the American alligator and how the populations have been protected through one of the most successful, sustainable-use management programs ever implemented. American alligators have been off the endangered species list since 1987 and populations continue to grow. Alligator farming is an important part of the program.
New to Gatorama this year is PO Gator, the resident piebald (or pied) alligator. There are only 21 of these in the world. Piebaldism is a rare genetic mutation resulting in partial loss of pigmentation in skin color and normally pigmented eyes. A new water feature is in progress and logistics are being finalized to welcome a pair of wallabies.
A sampling of GatorVentures offered throughout the year at Gatorama include the Fast Hands Challenge where visitors lean over the walkway and feed alligators and/or crocodiles. The Face-to-Face Challenge is an opportunity to stand a few feet in front of the American alligator named Big Daddy and two of his crocodilian friends. Uncle Waders is where young adventurers climb into a pool and learn how to and why alligators are moved on the farm.
General admission into Gatorama includes the educational hatching programs and seeing live hatches. A “Hatch and Hold” package is available for those wanting the hands-on hatching experience. Advanced reservations through the website are strongly encouraged as these packages typically sell out. Hatching times, prices, and reservation details are listed on the Hatching Festival website HatchingFestival.com or by calling (863) 675-0623.
Gatorama is proud to have the largest colony of American crocodiles in the United States with 65 and approximately 2,000 American alligators. The attraction opened in 1957 as one of Florida’s first alligator attractions and is a destination where learning and family memories naturally happen. It is a family-owned operation and continues to be a popular tourist attraction and successful alligator farm. The animal park is open Thursdays – Mondays, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. and is located at 10665 U.S. Highway 27 in Palmdale. For more information, visit Gatorama.com
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