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Rebecca Renner takes us to 'Gator Country' with a tale of swampers and poachers

It sounds more like a movie than real life.

Photo by Jacklyn Gion

A Florida wildlife agent goes undercover to immerse himself in the swampy world of alligator poachers — people who illegally kill gators and steal their eggs to sell to the highest bidder.

But the whole thing is true, and the story is told in a new book called “Gator Country” by author Rebecca Renner. Renner first heard the story from one of her high-school students and ended up traveling deep into the Florida swamps — a landscape she was already familiar with.

Along the way, she learned about not just gators, and gator poachers, but the natural beauty of the parts of Florida that are still relatively unspoiled.

Dive in, but wear good boots.


Tommy Tomlinson has hosted the podcast SouthBound for WFAE since 2017. He also does a commentary, On My Mind, which airs every Monday.