(CBS News) Alligators in North Carolina went into a deep freeze this week as a blast of winter cold gripped the region. Gators at The Swamp Park in Ocean Isle Beach froze in place with their noses sticking out of the icy water so they can breathe, The Associated Press reports.
Swamp Park manager George Howard said 18 American alligators at the park froze Monday night and stayed frozen all day Tuesday, The Charlotte Observer reports. The alligators seem to sense when the water is about to hit the freezing point and they poke their noses into the air "at just the right moment," Howard said.
When the water or air temperatures dip too low for them to be active, the cold-blooded reptiles go into a "state of brumation," Howard said. Brumation is a hibernation-like state for reptiles.
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