Alligator Safety

Here you can find some information on Alligator safety while kayaking on Armand Bayou.  Please understand that there is a likely hood you may run into an Alligator along your kayaking trip in the bayou.  It is one of the American Alligators habitats in the great state of Texas.  Remember that YOU are responsible for YOUR safety!

Alligator Safety
Be sure to adhere to the Alligator safety rules.

1.  Do not feed Alligators.

2.  Do not get close to them.

3.  Do not swim or wade where they are.

4.  Do not let your pets near them.

5.  Do not agitate or tease them.

6.  Do not approach an Alligators nest.

7.  Do not attempt to facebook friend them.  They do not have accounts!

Additional Alligator Tips!
Some additional Alligator tips
  • Kayaking:  When kayaking in the bayou stay towards the center of the channel.  Stay clear of clumps of floating plants, branches, and logs that are in the bayou.  And stay clear of overhanging trees and plants from the banks.  These are sometimes places an Alligator might just decide to hang out and they are very well camouflaged.  If you are geocaching or picking up litter, please remember to be observant and careful at all times.
  • Hissing:  If you hear an Alligator hissing at you it means that you are too close for comfort.  Back away slowly and give it more space.
  • Retreat:  It is suggested to stay at least 30 feet away from an Alligator.  We understand that you are on a kayak in the bayou and may find yourself closer than the suggested 30 feet.  If you find yourself closer to an Alligator, just paddle away from it calmly or back away slowly.  Never assume that the Alligator is a docile slow animal.  They can easily swim faster and run faster than you can paddle.  However, they very very rarely chase after people.
  • Protective:  The American Alligator is very protective of its young.  Never approach baby Alligators no matter how cute they are, and never attempt to separate the mother from her babies while they are in transit across the bayou.  It is best to avoid groups of small alligators under a foot long.
  • Basking:  Alligators are cold-blooded reptiles so they often are on the banks of the bayou basking in the sun to warm themselves.  Do not approach them when you see them laying there.  Also if they do come into the water they are likely just taking refuge in an area they are more comfortable and protected which is in or under the water.  Remain cautious.
  • Fishing:  Do not continue to fish in an area if you see that an Alligator has taken an interest in you or your fishing equipment.  Go fish somewhere else.  Also, watch when disposing of fish scraps or bait while you are in Alligator territory.

When you are kayaking on Armand Bayou, you will possibly have the opportunity to view an American Alligator in its natural habitat.  Feel free to observe them and watch their behaviors for a while.  Make sure to give them enough distance so that you are both comfortable.  That goes for your comfort and the Alligators comfort.  Make sure to discourage others who may violate the rules of being “Alligator Safe.”  And make sure to remember that it is a criminal offense for any person to intentionally feed a free-ranging Alligator in the state of Texas.  Check out this video from the Texas Parks and Wildlife about the American Alligator.

We have had many observations of Alligators while kayaking in our combined years on the bayou.  We have never had an incident with an aggressive Alligator by someone doing a kayak rental from us, and the state of Texas has never had a recorded death from an Alligator attack.  Well, strike that last comment out now!  In 2015 Texas had the first recorded death in the state’s history by an Alligator.  An individual decided to go swimming after midnight, while intoxicated, in a known Alligator habitat with warning signs.  It wasn’t in our area.  The moral of the story is…. do not go swimming with Alligators.  Better yet, just stick to our tips on Alligator safety and you should be fine.  I would think that would go without saying, but there it is.  Thousands of people travel this bayou yearly, and we are yet to find any recorded incidents involving a kayaker.  We love kayaking the bayou and consider the American Alligator just one more of the cool perks of living in such a unique and diverse habitat.

If you would like to see more information on Alligators and Alligator safety please check out the Texas Parks and Wildlife links below.

Alligator safety by Texas Parks and Wildlife.
More American Alligator Info.

In summary, think of it like being a guest in someones home… Respect them at all times and use common sense.