|Picnic for the park
Cullinan Park's 754 acres are home to a wide variety of wildlife from birds, snakes, reptiles and fish to mammals including racoons, opposum, bobcats, coyotes, feral hogs and more. Most of the mammals are rarely seen, preferring to steer clear of humans. Please enjoy any wildlife you do see from a distance, and remember that you are the guest in this wild habitat. All wildlife in the park is protected. Feeding, harassing, injuring or removing wildlife is prohibited.
For many, the most exciting wild creatures at Cullinan are our resident American alligators. After the American crocodile, the alligator is the largest reptile in North America. Females typically reach 6-8 feet long, and males can reach lengths of almost 16 feet.
Alligators are frequently seen in White Lake and are quite active in the spring and summer months. Alligator courtship typically begins in early April, and mating occurs in May or June. Females build a mound nest of soil, vegetation, or debris and deposit an average of 32 to 46 eggs in late June or early July. Incubation requires approximately 63-68 days, and hatching occurs from mid-August through early September.
Alligators are aquatic, spending their time in or near the water. Alligators use the water to control their body temperature. During warm days they can be found lying out absorbing heat from the sun on logs and low banks. During the hottest parts of the summer, the alligator spends most of its time in the water to keep cool. During cold weather alligators will stay in areas of deep water or they will excavate a den and can hold their breath for up to 12 hours or longer - which is why they are not frequently seen in winter. During warm weather, this drops to about 15 -20 minutes on average.
Thank you to the photographers who captured these amazing wildlife shots at Cullinan: