Oklahoma, like some other southern states, has suffered from abnormal, extreme cold. Thermometers in the center of the region fell below -20°C (-4°F).
In southeastern Oklahoma, in McCurten County, the swamps are frozen. The alligators that live there try to adapt to the cold. Even though they’re frozen in the ice, they leave their nose outside so they can breathe.
Pictures of the reptiles were published by Oklahoma Wildlife Conservation Officer David Arbor. He took these pictures in the Red Slough marshes. Previously, this behavior of reptiles during frosts was observed in North Carolina in 2018 and 2019.
This state is akin to hibernation in mammals. Abnormal coldness causes reptiles’ metabolism to slow down. If the animals left the swamps, they could die, because they cannot regulate their body temperature. When the thermometers rise above zero, the alligators will return to their normal state.
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