Several days ago, a gentleman told me that there had been a small alligator living in the pond down the road. I was excited to hear this. I love to see wildlife thriving and people coexisting with wildlife. In my mind, it’s a win-win situation. Instead, he told me that he had called wildlife officials to hopefully relocate the alligator. They never responded, according to him. I told him that reptiles often return “home” if moved, unless greater distance or other factors result in the animal staying at its new location. I also explained that gators are shy and naturally fear people, so if left alone, they pose little to no threat. If people avoid nests and waters’ edge, all should be fine. He said he was worried that some unattended kid or animal would be in danger. I replied that therein lies the problem. I believe in supervising kids and pets! (Not just in wildlife habitats!). He proceeded to tell me that he threw rocks at the gator every time he saw it. He hasn’t seen it lately, and he is hoping it moved on. With neighbors like that, I hope it has, too. I hope to change mindsets of people who fear gators too much. I also hope to change viewpoints of people who don’t fear and respect them enough. They were here before we moved in. I feel we must find a way to peacefully and successfully coexist! Let them do their thing, keeping ecosystems in balance. Don’t try and get rid of them, and don’t try to make them your pets. Just appreciate them as part of your surroundings. Be smart, considerate, and safe. Think about the big picture—a greater time and space than just you occupy. Nature is not ours to control. I believe we must be good stewards of our world. Thanks for reading this and considering these points. Maybe we can improve our world.