Giving baby the heads up: Little alligator grins from ear-to-ear as he gets a ride down the river on his mother's head

By Graham Smith

It certainly beats having to learn the art of swimming.

This baby alligator did not feel like getting his feet wet when his mother wanted to go for a swim.

So the crafty creature simply climbed on her head and hitched a ride instead.

Hitching a ride: A baby alligator sits on his mother's head as she swims at Brazos Bend State Park in Texas

After a spell enjoying the warm Texan sunshine, the mother alligator decided to go for a quick dip to cool off from the heat.

But her grinning child was having none of it - and climbed on top of her head knowing she would keep it above the surface so he could soak up some more sun.

The wonderful moment at Brazos Bend State Park was captured by keen photographer Clayton Bownds, 40.

Mr Bownds could not believe his eyes as the baby alligator sat tight and enjoyed the ride.

He said: 'I was really surprised when I spotted the baby being carried by his mother on her head - I've never heard of this kind of behaviour.'

Bonding: The wonderful moment between mother and son was captured by photographer Clayton Bownds

'He seemed pretty content there,' Mr Bownds added. 'I stayed for around half an hour just watching and he remained on top of the "perch" for the whole time.

'Occasionally his mother was swimming with him sat on her head and the rest of the time they were very still almost like statues.

'It seems this sort of thing is quite rare and to have been fortunate enough to not only witness it, but have a camera handy to document it too, was a great feeling.'



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