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Resources of Alligator Harbor Aquatic Preserve Quick Topics
 
  • Archaeological Resources

    Most of the archaeological sites in the vicinity of Alligator Harbor are small and disturbed to varying degrees. However, one of the best known examples of the late Deptford-early Swift Creek (1,000 B.C. - 500 A. D.) ceremonial mound is the Yent Mound, located on Alligator Harbor. Another important site located on the harbor is the Tucker site, which contains some Swift Creek phase materials, but is primarily an example of the Weeden Island Phase (500 A.D. - 1,000 A.D.). This site also contained a burial mound, as well as a village area.
Sunset on beach
  • Physical Features

    The Alligator Harbor area is part of a broad, sandy shore plain which is constantly being altered by wind, rainfall, and sea level change. The barrier islands and spits in the area began forming about 5,000 years ago when sea level had risen essentially to its present position.

    Alligator Harbor is bordered by several prominent offshore shoal systems, Dog Island Reef to the southwest, South Shoal to the southeast, and the Ochlockonee Shoal to the east. Dog Island Reef is considered to be an example of a submerged barrier island; the South Shoal was probably deposited by the Ochlockonee River during a lower stand of sea level; and the Ochlockonee Shoal probably represents a downed barrier island or headland. 

Saltmarsh and sand shoreline
  • Natural Communities

    The dominant natural communities of Alligator Harbor are unvegetated soft-bottom communities (unconsolidated substrate). Other natural communities that can be found in Alligator Harbor are seagrass beds, saltmarshes, oyster reefs and algal beds.
Horseshoe crabs
  • Wildlife

    The seagrass beds and saltmarshes of Alligator Harbor are important nursery grounds for many species of juvenile fish and invertebrates. Alligator Harbor is an important forage area for shorebirds and migratory birds, particularly trans-Gulf migrants. Alligator Point is a vital resting spot these birds. Alligator Harbor is one of the world's largest feeding grounds of the Kemp's ridley, the world's most endangered sea turtle.

 

Last updated: April 12, 2013

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