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Updated: 11/27/2015 09:37:29AM

Fewer birds in Venice this year?

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An alligator lurked close to the pond, in the shade of a tree near the green — then suddenly burst out into the fairway with astonishing speed and chomped a three-foot tall sandhill crane before the bird could flap its huge wings to take off in flight.

Did the gator make its hungry high-speed move into the fairway, away from the safety of its watery habitat, because there are now fewer small birds, like ibises, for it to prey upon close to the edge of the pond?

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