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The Most Outrageous Alligator Poachers

This book is going to take you deep into the heart of the Everglades before it became a national park. This journey will give you a great insight into how the laws of the land changed and how it affected the people of the area.This story is plunging deep into the swamplands whose people learned to live off the land as a way to survive in this harsh terrain.Many are commercial fishermen and stone crabbers, and as the I was from the area, it took me a year or so before I learned that they were ex-moonshiners, and their fathers were plume hunters. The best guides in the area are, in fact, the best alligator poachers and hunters known to this area, and the best of all is known to be the men depicted in this story.Behind all the complicated waterways, there is a root system like no other just like a brain of a computer, and behind that is a maze of rivers that are some of the most complicated known to man. People have lost their lives trying to maneuver through the shallow waterways.The new park rangers that were now assigned to this area had to appeal to the local fisherman to show them how to get out if Chokoloskee Bay and a few other waterways so they could patrol the area and return safely that evening to their families. Most of the families and early settlers were related to each other and would clan up like the Indians and did not like outsiders.When the information that was provided to the first park rangers were not at all accurate, the locals, as well as Peg Brown and his friends, enjoyed toying with the rangers as much as possible. They would lay out some routes for the park rangers to follow, and let's just say there were always some significant points missing. With that the temperament of the poachers grew more mischievous than ever, which led the authorities on highly action-packed chases and exciting adventures and escapades throughout the dangerous maze of the Ten Thousand Islands.Everglades natives believe that the animals in the national park belong to them, and they should be allowed to use animals as they saw fit, much of the same way a developing nation controls its oil.The local people were not all that upset about the widespread killings of the alligators. Most alligators were a nuisances, but they believed in the hidden supply theory, which was said that an unlimited supply of alligators would always emerge from the swamps to replace the ones that were poached and made into shoes, belts, and purses for some of the wealthiest people who could afford to buy them.

--Barbara Tyner Hall

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