I paddle there without any problems and some of the areas the are very gators friendly. The areas that are very gator friendly you wouldn't be able to sail anyways because of weeds and stumps in shallow water. I recently held a kayak fishing club event on lake Moultrie in an area that has a ton of gators and one several months before in the cypress swamps of lake Marion. Gators are a part of life down here. Instead of researching the numbers of gators harvested look at the number of gator attacks that have been documented. I think that will help put your worries to rest. It stands true that they are more often scared of us than we should be of them.
This article might make you feel a little better too.http://www.topkayaker.net/articles/natu ... .htm#AVOID