Monday, April 28, 2014

Swamp People

We thought it would be fun to take Joseph and his cousins on their first "swamp tour" during this visit to Louisiana.  It's actually a pretty big tourist attraction, especially since The History Channel started their reality series about alligator hunters a few years ago.  We settled on Annie Miller's Son's Tours and met up behind the Bayou Delight restaurant.  A boat came to pick us up and take us further into the bayou and through the Mandalay National Wildlife Refuge.  Despite not being happy about having to take a picture, Joseph was excited the rest of the time.

It's quite serene on the water, with lots of pretty scenery,

and then there's suddenly an alligator sitting there.

Interestingly, most of the gators will either ignore you or swim away from the boat if it gets too close.  Each guide has actually trained a few alligators to come when they call!!   Soon enough, along came poor Lulu, who had apparently swallowed some kind of a trap that has a hook and a floating pool noodle attached to it.  She was completely unphased by it, and there weren't any volunteers to try to reach over and cut it off her.  It certainly didn't effect her appetite.

Our guide was very knowledgeable about the local flora and fauna, pointing out all the different kinds of trees, Spanish moss, Cypress knees, water hyacinth and the like.

Who knew bald eagles came to nest in Louisiana, but there there were perched on the highest tree tops and soaring overhead.  We also saw egrets and herons and lots and lots of turtles.

Swamp tour selfies!  Even one with an alligator over my shoulder.

Swamp People!

Along came another alligator for a snack.  Check out the video from Uncle Glenn!  I think I hear the guide say this one is Louie Louie, not Lil Joe or Robert (that's pronounced Ro-bear in Cajun country), but he was awfully close and amazing to watch.

Joseph is now totally into alligators, and he came happily marching back from the gift shop at the airport with this big guy.  I now get to see "Lulu" lurking in my bathtub when I go to take a shower every morning.

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