Reported on February 8th, 2017, this orange alligator was spotted in Hanahan, South Carolina. Much like the alligator of the same color that was photographed in 2011, there are a few causes that could have made this creature the color it appears.
Jay Butfiloski, the Department of Natural Resources’ Alligator Program Coordinator, believes that the alligator might be this color because of where it was residing during the colder months. He said “[It] might be iron oxide that has discolored it" after it had been living in a rusty pipe. Others believe it could be because of the high amount of clay deposits in the area. However Butfiloski does not deny that this could be a new color mutation entirely.
Footage of a supposed “sewer alligator” has emerged on the internet. Stories of the animals living in city sewer systems date back as early as the 1920’s and are usually thought of as mere legends, but several photographs, such as this recent one, may prove otherwise. It is thought that baby gators were bought from pet shops by unknowing owners and were cruelly flushed down the toilet or discarded into rivers when they began to grow rapidly. Many people think that some alligators survived and managed to breed, producing a long line of these underground “sewer gators”.