MADEIRA BEACH, Fla. -
Forget about ponies, bounce houses and clowns.
For $175, a Florida businessman is spicing up kids' parties by bringing tiny alligators and letting them swim in clients' pools. Bob Barrett says the gator pool parties are totally safe — the reptiles' mouths are clamped shut with veterinary-grade tape.
He says he gives the kids a safety lesson and a science talk about gators. Barrett runs a beachside alligator attraction where people can get their photos taken with the young reptiles; he started renting the gators to parties last summer when business was slow.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission says Barrett has a license to exhibit the gators and adds that people should always use caution when they come into contact with wild animals.