Strange: Crocodile with missing jaw discovered in Florida

In this still taken from a video released on September 28, 2023, shows a jawless alligator. — Facebook/Gatorland Orlando
In this still taken from a video released on September 28, 2023, shows a jawless alligator. — Facebook/Gatorland Orlando

A female alligator which went viral on social media recently due to her missing upper jaw was named after a song in Florida after the park urged netizens to picthin some names for the reptile.

The gator attracted thousands of thousands of users on social media due to her uniqueness leaving people wondering about what led to her missing jaw. 

The reptile was named “Jawlene,” after the Dolly Parton song “Jolene”.

The alligator was found earlier last month in Seminole County. It was later taken by Gatorland, a theme park and wildlife preserve in Orlando.

In an online request to help decide the critter’s name, the park urged netizens online to suggest the name of a 3-to-4-year-old female weighing about 18 pounds.

CEO of Gatorland Mark McHugh while speaking in a video posted on Facebook said that the name was chosen due to the hit tune, which is on Rolling Stone’s list of 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

“This little gator is an absolute treasure, we are so in love with her, but another American treasure is Dolly Parton,” McHugh said, adding that “one of the names that kind of rung really clear with us and grew on us was a takeoff on one of Dolly’s famous songs, so we’re going to name this little gator, ‘Jawlene.'”

It remains unclear what caused the animal to lose its upper jaw.

“Don’t know exactly what happened. It could’ve been a number of things, could have been another alligator, maybe even a boat propeller because it’s a pretty clean injury that went across, but it sealed over, she’s been eating,” Mike Hileman, a Gatorland director, told News 6.

“This isn’t the first type of alligator we have taken in with this type of injury,” he continued.

“We’ve had several others and we’ve been able to keep those healthy, growing. They’re now years old and I don’t see any other reasons why this one can’t do the same thing.”

The alligator attracted the attention of thousands after its photos were spread on social media, but Hileman said she is still very humble” for now.

“I mean, she’s really getting a lot of attention right now. I hope it doesn’t go to her head and become a little diva,” he told WINK News.

“But right now, she’s very good, very down to Earth.”

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