Gators – Out to Lunch – It’s Acadiana
To the rest of the United States, the symbol of Louisiana is the alligator. Gators slither across T-shirts, baseball caps, and posters in every souvenir shop in the state. You can find the cute critters doing everything from smoking a cigarette leaning up against a gas lamp in New Orleans’ French Quarter, to playing the accordion in a pirogue in the shade of a cypress tree on a sleepy bayou. Here in Acadiana, the alligator is far from a cuddly toy with a cute toothy grin. It’s a crop. An industry. And in some communities a danger to life and limb.
If you find a gator on your front lawn – depending on where you live, the law might let you take care of it yourself. If it doesn’t – and if you have a lick of sense – you can call on a professional to get rid of your gator. Like Ronnie Guy.
Ronnie has been a nuisance alligator hunter for the State of Louisiana for twelve years. He’s a member of the Louisiana Alligator Advisory Council and serves on the board of directors for the Louisiana Trapping and Alligator Hunting Association.
If you prefer your alligator in a different form – perhaps in the shape of a belt, purse or wallet – you can purchase all of these products and more from Lafayette’s Mark Staton Company.
The company started out in 1992 as simply Mark Staton. Today a dozen employees design, manufacture and retail alligator skin products to individual customers and retail stores across the country.
The owner of Mark Staton Company is still, Mark Staton.
What to do if a gator shows up at your elementary school, how to get one to end up on your feet as high end boots, or on your table in sauce piquant, this episode of Out to Lunch will substantially increase your gator IQ.
Photos at Cafe Vermilionville by Gwen Aucoin.