City of Oviedo 9. April is alligator courting season, which means the frisky crocodilians may be venturing out more in the hopes of finding a companion before mating season begins in earnest in May and June. Rather than having any one real standout score, this place was great across the board. In our analysis, we looked at all places in Florida with populations of over 10,000 people in terms of the following criteria: Then we divided these crimes into four categories: Once we omitted places that didn’t report data to the bureau that year, we were left with 156 places. An amazing video of a large alligator in Florida is making its rounds across the internet this week. City of Marco Island 2. Even those little gators can take a finger- or more off. West Palm Beach and its suburbs racked up a total of 205 removals over the past two years, with 139 taken from Wellington and 77 from Palm Beach Gardens. Alligators and crocodiles are in different families. One of the people killed was 10-year-old Bradley Weidenhamer, who died after he was attacked by a 400-pound alligator on the Loxahatchee River in 1993. A massive 10-foot long alligator was recently spotted on camera interrupting a golf outing in Florida. Human-alligator encounters do happen, as you well know from recent news accounts. Whether it’s the close community, the pretty setting, or just the Florida weather, it’s hard to go wrong with Marco Island. In order to fairly compare spots with both large and small populations, we calculated all of these crime rates based on crimes per capita (per person). If you live in a landlocked state and think your only chance of seeing an alligator is at a zoo, think again. Okay, come on, who doesn’t want to live here? Of course, that wasn’t the only standout score here. These 10 suburbs are great places to live without ... California’s capital is often outshined by bigger cities like San Francisco and Los Angeles, but ... 21 Things You Should Know About West Virginia Before Moving, Knowing Your Rights & Understanding Fair Housing Laws. There was more to this place, though, than physical safety. Like our No. Also, Silver Springs and that area by the National Forest? Alligators. The 19th lowest property crime also assured that your possessions would be safe, especially since there were very few thefts reported in the year of our study. By the numbers, this 35,899 person city was the largest in our top 10, but still managed to have no murder reported in 2013. 16 ranking for total crimes per capita. RELATED: 750-pound alligator found in Jupiter has new home in Gatorland. Not bad for one of the bigger cities in our top 10, at 26,264 people. Although some years do not see any fatal attacks, other years have seen many. To see the top 50 safest places in the state, just scroll to the bottom of this article where there will be a nifty table waiting for you. I’m surprised that’s not on the safe list. Niceville. The majority of American alligators inhabit Florida and Louisiana, with over a million alligators in each state. The backwater river is flanked by marshes instead of banks, where it is easy to spot a gator basking in the sun. Your email address will not be published. As well as a place that is up and coming .There is hardly any crime back in that area .Plus to the girl Shannon whom was having such a difficult time in a place that bares such a Niceville name.Sometimes people just react to you by the outside instead of the inside . © Gannett Co., Inc. 2021. Maybe someone has a different experience than I have, though. It’s no wonder, then, that this place had the 11th lowest violent crime on our list. In fact, this place had pretty low violent crime in every area except for assaults, and even then, there were only 0.0011 crimes of that type per person, which was way better than most of the rest of the state. I have never seen an alligator outside of a lake. City of Lake Mary 10. Cooper City. Alligators can survive for short periods of time in saltwater but they usually try to avoid it as it isn’t someplace they can live long-term. After being caught, the croc -- an endangered species, exempt from dispatch -- was sent back to Florida to live in the wild or an alligator park. There were especially few vehicle thefts reported during the year of our survey. And gators can grow big. It’s also worth mentioning that locals here had a 1 in 60 chance of being the victim of a crime here, which is pretty impressive and definitely something to cheer about. You won’t likely leave the Ocala National Forest north of Orlando without seeing a gator or two. The 10 Safest Places in Florida 2015 Edition By Movoto Real Estate. I have been traveling all over the State of Florida .For well over 15 years and would say this list needs some updating .There are some really nice little towns that are family oriented like Windermere . City of Parkland 3. Then, we weighted these rankings so that murders, violent crimes, and property crimes each made up 30 percent of the overall score, whereas the total number of crimes accounted for a smaller portion of the final score—10 percent. Not everyone can live in Oakland, CA. Just swing by the Alligator Farm in St. Augustine or Gatorland in Orlando to see just how ginormous they can grow, and yes these enormous alligators live out there, not only in our Florida zoos and alligator farms but also in the Florida wild. 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From 1948 through 2008, 410 unprovoked bites have occurred, with 25 ending in the person’s death. Locals here were lucky enough to enjoy the 13th lowest violent crime on our list, which included, as you may have guessed, no murders for the year. Areas with the highest removals are in and around Tampa, Sarasota, Orlando, Fort Myers and Jacksonville. A small population is also found in Tamaulipas, in Mexico. Alligators and crocodiles are from the same scientific order, but from different families. It also doesn’t hurt that this spot had the fourth lowest property crime per capita, with notably few thefts per capita. It meant that they had only a 1 in 49 chance of being the victim of a crime, with the chances being almost nonexistent that it would be of the violent sort. Within their range alligators will live practically anywhere there is water, except the sea. The Florida Times-Union ~ 1 Independent Drive, Suite 200, Jacksonville, FL 32202 ~ Do Not Sell My Personal Information ~ Cookie Policy ~ Do Not Sell My Personal Information ~ Privacy Policy ~ Terms Of Service ~ Your California Privacy Rights / Privacy Policy. Town of Key Biscayne 7. That means Floridians can’t just call up the local alligator trapper to remove one like they would if it were a raccoon or possum. Plenty of residents have stories to tell (such as encounters with Chubbs, the enormous mascot who roams the Buffalo Creek Golf Course) or have family traditions like feeding baby alligators pieces of hotdog for $2. Original content available for non-commercial use under a Creative Commons license, except where noted. This place also offered locals a very comforting 1 in 72 chance of being the victim of a crime. Imagine a 17 … With the 10th lowest violent crime, the 11th lowest property crime, and the 10th lowest total crime, it’s easy to see why this is a great place to live. In fact, these top 50 spots would all make fine homes for anyone looking to relocate to Florida, so if you’re in the market, don’t hesitate to get in touch. Alligators Generally Avoid Humans. Anybody know about those two? In fact, it’s quite the opposite. We ranked each place with a score from one to 156 in every criteria, with scores closer to one being safer. It’s also worth mentioning that locals had only a 1 in 94 chance of being the victim of any sort of crime. Anyone with concerns about an alligator should call the Statewide Nuisance Alligator Program at 866-392-4286. Tampa topped the list in 2017 with 181 nuisance gators but was bested last year by Sarasota, which tallied 205. Statewide, 6,700 nuisance alligators were killed or relocated in 2017. Who says you can’t enjoy beaches, sun, and relaxation without being safe? 1 place, and like all spots in our top 10, this Florida locale had no murders … You’ll Definitely Love These: The majority of theft in Niceville and Valparaiso were people feeding their drug habits. All in all, Winter Springs had the fourth lowest total crime per capita on our list and was easily one of the safest spots in Florida during 2013. Choose the plan that’s right for you. Many residents seek waterfront homes, and increasingly participate in water-related activities. That left the 16,942 locals with a low 1 in 53 chance of being the victim of a crime, as well as a lot less to worry about. More than that, this place had the 14th lowest property crime, with shockingly few vehicle thefts for the year. While the name of this small place may sound exotic, this is actually a pretty homey spot to call your own. That's not being snarky, either — the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission estimated there are as many as 1.3 million alligators in Florida. Be cautious when casting a line near alligators. The property crime and total crime both ranked No. Lakes abound and rivers run through the forest giving alligators plenty of spots to do their thing. else in Florida, alligators occupy every body of fresh water in the state. Closing Costs: What Are They and Who Pays? As we’ve found during our research in the past at the Movoto Real Estate Blog, there are some great places for security here. Beyond that, the scores here were hard to beat. The largest ever caught in the sunshine state reportedly measured up to a staggering 17.4 feet-long. Alligators feature in Florida’s marketing efforts as school mascots, and as part of tourist attractions like alligator wrestling, viewing in airboat tours and feeding. Tampa topped the list in 2017 with 181 … This story was originally posted to PalmBeachPost.com and shared to GateHouse's Florida websites. 1. Also stay away from fishing in heavy vegetation and near the water’s edge where alligators like to hang out. Your email address will not be published. Just be careful as Florida is home to crocodiles as well as alligators and the crocodiles can live in saltwater. City of Niceville 4. When everything was added up, this spot had the 14th lowest total crime, and easily secured a place on our top 10, as well as its residents. 3, just one more reason this place is a safe bet in your home search. Let’s be honest: who doesn’t love Florida? The beaches for the college kids, the theme parks for the little ones, golf for… well everyone, and some nature that you won’t find anywhere else in the nation. It also had one of the lowest vehicle theft rates, with one reported crime of that type that year. So what, besides not worrying about being attacked or bumped off, did this mean for all those friendly locals? Locals had a 1 in 67 chance of being the victim of a crime, thanks to the sixth lowest property crime as well as the sixth lowest total crime per capita. Exciting Live Alligator Shows Featuring the Gator Boys. Installing a pool enclosure is also a good idea, however beaware of natural alligator repellents. The violent crime was the fifth lowest, with only 0.00083 crimes per person, so it’s easy to feel safe in these parts. A map of where nuisance alligators have been removed includes all areas of the state, from Pensacola to the Keys. Areas with the highest removals are in and around Tampa, Sarasota, Orlando, Fort Myers and Jacksonville. This place may have barely made our top 10, but it certainly had the numbers to earn that spot. This little 12,352 person village is close enough to the big fun to be exciting and secluded enough to get away from it all. It’s true, this state has a lot to offer, but could it also offer safety to the many people who want to move there? Here are tips on how to live with alligators in Florida: Alligators become more active as the weather warms up. When creating this Big Deal List, we did not rely on personal opinion or experience. If you live in Pinellas County, or anywhere. Required fields are marked *. So unless your house backs onto a lake, you really have nothing to worry about. And don’t think the prehistoric predators are confined to wildlife areas. Besides, how could you go wrong with a place that had absolutely no murders or rapes reported in 2013? A lot of north west Florida is alligator free, as are most coastal cities. Even tiny Palm Beach had at least one removed during the same time period when a wayward gator found itself on the beach side of the Intracoastal. Parkland. So residents of this very nice city, rest easy tonight, you’re in a seriously safe spot. Alligators have a wider, rounded U-shaped snout while crocs have a more pointed V-shaped snout. Alligators have inhabited Florida's marshes, swamps, rivers and lakes for many centuries, and are found in all 67 counties. Of course, it’s also a safe haven too. In recent years, Florida has experienced tremendous human population growth. Village of North Palm Beach 5. While alligators primarily live in the southeastern U.S., crocodiles are found in North, South, and Central America as well as Africa, Southeast Asia, and Australia. “When temperatures rise, an alligator’s metabolism increases and they begin seeking prey,” an FWC press release says. I have lived in Central Florida for 23 years. Two Homes On One Property: 7 Tips on Getting a Mortgage Under Uncommon Circumstances, A 12-Step Guide to Buying Your First Home. A popular site for hikers, boaters, and birders alike, the St. John’s River is also a very common site to see alligators in Florida! When temperatures in Florida drop below 80 degrees Fahrenheit, alligators lose their appetite, and they stop feeding altogether when temperatures hit 73 degrees Fahrenheit or lower, which is why most alligators live in the southern part of the United States, near Wild Florida airboat rides. Alligators will and do eat pets. Two years later in June 2018, an alligator killed 47-year-old Plantation resident Shizuka Matsuki while she walked her dogs in Davie’s Silver Lakes Rotary Nature Park. “They’ve been at people’s front doors, in retention ponds, swimming pools,” Cochran said. Bites from alligators usually occur around or in water, since alligators can’t capture their prey on land very well. This was a slightly bigger place, with 33,706 residents, but it still managed to have impressively few rapes and no murders reported in 2013. This spot is also not too new to our top 10 lists, and it lands on this safety list again for some pretty solid reasons. Fishing Around Alligators. Incredibly big. The FWC decides whether it poses a risk and will then assign a trapper that it contracts with and licenses. Digital access or digital and print delivery. This little locale of only 12,891 residents was simply perfect for anyone worried about the physical safety of their family. RELATED: Father of boy killed by gator couldn’t pull child from gator’s jaws. In Florida, gator shows are about as common as sunshine, but only Everglades Holiday Park features the actual Gator Boys from the hit reality show. Looking to escape the big city? Your possessions are pretty safe here too, considering Parkland had the second lowest crime of that type in the state. We’ll admit, there was a little bit of violent crime here, but seeing as this place ranked 14th out of over 150 cities, that’s still pretty darned good. We’ll gladly help you on that journey, even if it’s just to point you towards someplace safe (hint: see above). It also had the 13th lowest property crime, which all added up to this locale having the 11th lowest total crime per capita on our list. Sure, this place may very loosely translate to “Point Fat,” but that doesn’t mean this is at all a bad place to live. City of Punta Gorda 8. With one person taking video on one side, and a few lucky nature photography enthusiast on the other, an alligator estimated to be fifteen feet long crossed between the group allowing everyone a long look at one of Florida’s most recognizable residents. But it still easily beat out over 80 percent of the state in that category, so there’s really not much to worry about, especially since the chance of being the victim of a crime here was only 1 in 80. Your California Privacy Rights / Privacy Policy. Watch out for increased alligator activity as the weather warms. Read on for the details. How Many Potatoes Does It Take To Power Your House? The largest recorded Florida alligator measured 17 feet 5 inches. Lastly, we averaged these weighted rankings together into one overall Big Deal Score, and the place with the lowest number for that score was our safest spot. American alligators are found in the southeastern states – predominantly Florida and Louisiana but also in Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, the Carolinas and certain parts of Texas, Arkansas and Oklahoma. What all this meant was that this city had the second lowest total crime, and offered residents a very tiny 1 in 100 chance of being the victim of a crime. Like This Post? In the end, locals of Lake Mary had a mere 1 in 48 chance of being the victim of any sort of crime, backed up by a No. Some alligators will try and grab a hooked fish. The large reptile was caught in the surf and may actually have made his way up the southeastern coast -- from Florida -- by swimming, plain and simple. Over the past year, strange alligator sightings have occurred all over the United States. You might see some new names on this list compared to last year, and there are definitely some familiar faces appearing in the top. Over the past decade, Florida has averaged seven unprovoked alligator bites to humans per year that are serious enough to require medical treatment. There’s no need in Winter Springs, considering there were no murders reported here in the year of our study. Worried about your property or personal safety? Boaters, paddlers and fishermen see plenty. When kept in captivity, alligators are known to live an incredible length of time. This spot had slightly higher property crime, due to quite a few thefts, but considering there were still merely 0.02 property crimes per person for that year, it’s still not a major issue. As we may have mentioned last time Niceville showed up on our safety list, this is indeed a nice place to be. American alligators are no longer an endangered species, but are protected under a classification that allows only people with special licenses and permits to take them. Rest easy tonight, folks, you’re living in a very safe spot. To top all that off, Niceville had the fifth lowest property crime as well as the fifth lowest total crime. Along with the zero murders reported here in 2013, Key Biscayne also experienced no rapes or robberies, and very few assaults. Otherwise, nuisance gators can be sold to an alligator farm. An estimated 771 alligators live in just a thirteen mile radius of the river. They just push through the screen and off they go.”. Besides, this place still had the 15th lowest total crime on our list. The violent crime here was the 19th lowest on our list, which may sound a little high, but it still beat out the majority of bigger and smaller spots here. They are both members of the Crocodylia, but crocodiles are from the Crocodylidae family, while alligators come from the Alligatordae family. “Pools aren’t uncommon. Or, you can just read on to the next section to find out how we got this ranking in the first place. Do You Live in One of These Dangerous Small Cities? City of Winter Springs 6. Adult Florida alligators are usually 6 to 12 feet long. You might want to call it quaint, and you might even call it sleepy, but one thing you should definitely call this little 14,836 population locale is safe. But times change, and the FBI has a new set of crime data to look over. “Not to scare people, but there are over a million of them and they are all around.”. With an estimated 1.3 million alligators in Florida, the state’s Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is warning the public to be aware of the increase in alligator activity this time of year and the possibilities of encountering them. Florida has 339 documented alligator attacks from 1948-2006 with incidents also reported in South Carolina, Louisiana, Georgia, Texas and Alabama. In June 2016, 2-year-old Lane Graves died after he was snatched from the shore of a Disney World resort by an alligator. In 2016, the Statewide Nuisance Alligator Program in Florida received 12,759 nuisance alligator complaints, resulting in removal of 8,050 alligators. I found it more enjoyable to be good to them,” he said. More than a million alligators live throughout Florida, though the species remains listed as an endangered species because it closely resembles the endangered American crocodile. White tailed deer, bald eagles, ospreys, bobcats and alligators are just a few of the animals that live within the park and around the 141 square kilometre lake. All rights reserved. Florida residents know that we share the state with a large alligator population — an estimated 1.3 million to be exact! Instead we turned to the newly released 2013 FBI Uniform Crime Report to get our data. Though times have changed, Niceville still easily made our top 10, due to some very strong scores, which included zero murders reported in 2013. Niceville is such a nice place to live that it has been on many of our best places to live in … “They can literally be in any puddle of water,” said Boynton Beach resident Richard Cochran, who removed nuisance alligators for the state until last year when an unrelated back injury sidelined him. An estimated 1.3 million alligators live in Florida, according to Florida Fish and Wildlife. That increased to 7,114 last year, according to FWC data. Cochran said if a nuisance gator is 4 feet or longer and the trapper doesn’t have a special permit to take it alive, it’s usually killed. When Did They Stop Using Asbestos and Why? Gators and Mini-Golf Last year, an alligator grabbed a … Most of the gators in the U.S. live in Louisiana and Florida (congrats) — with about 1 million each. The water is shallower, crystal clear and alligators aren’t likely to be there. The life of a Florida alligator. This place did have slightly higher violent crime, due to a relatively high number of assaults and burglaries. Lake Kissimmee is known for its phenomenal bird watching, as well as having some of the best fishing in Florida. Although alligator bite incidents resulting in serious injury are rare in Florida, the FWC recommends taking precautions when having fun in and around the water. So we’ve updated our results, for all those who are itching to make their home in Florida. Crocodiles and alligators both live in Florida, with the Everglades the only place on earth in which both coexist. Certainly not the people who live in these 10 fantastic spots, that’s for sure. Marco Island had the lowest violent crime on our entire list, with no murders, rapes, or robberies reported in 2013. Like our No. Southern Florida is the only place where both alligators and crocodiles live side by side. Locals will probably say they feel pretty safe here, and the 1 in 55 chance of being the victim of a crime here definitely backs that up. Even though that’s really comforting to people who live states such as Arizona, there are lots of rivers and marshes in Florida, particularly in the southern section of Florida where the Everglades are. How Long Does It Really Take to Pack for a Move? 1 place, and like all spots in our top 10, this Florida locale had no murders reported the year of our survey. Where do alligators live? What about Zephyrhills, Fl.? Six alligators were killed following the boy’s death. The numbers for this place really spoke for themselves. By numbers alone, Lake Mary boasted no murders in 2013, as well as very few rapes and robberies. 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