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Glass Alligator Farms- Post Trip

After visiting the farm, I have a much better understanding about of ins and outs of alligator farming. Hearing Mr.Glass tell stories about swatting off mother alligators with hats in order to get eggs was awesome. They have a small window of time to get the eggs, since female gators only lay a few months out of the year. Around June and July, he and his crew hop in helicopters and hover around swampy areas of the Southeastern United States to hunt for nests. Most states allow them to only take 50% of the eggs per nest, as to not deplete the population. When the nests are located they approach with little to no defense, fight off fire ants, and grab the eggs while trying not to become a meal for an alligator! After getting back to safety the guys much make sure that the eggs are not rotated, which would kill the baby gator inside. The eggs must be kept in highly controlled environment to ensure proper growth.
The size of the operation is incredible. Glass Enterprises harvests around 50,000 alligators per year, and has the capacity to house 150,000 eggs for incubation. His alligator business is one of the top three largest in the world and small-town Camilla, Georgia is host to people from all over the world thanks to Mr. and Mrs. Glass. Companies such as Gucci and Prada are regular buyers of the skins and appreciate that the alligators are humanely grown and harvested.
It was great to learn that the entire skin is used from the alligators, and that the meat is even deboned and vacuum sealed for consumers throughout the U.S. I had never associated alligators with agriculture so I learned a lot, which made this one of my favorite stops!