What happens when the History Channel and Animal Planet end up sleeping together after a night of partying during Mardi Gras? 

"Swamp People."

The new reality series spotlighting the families (called "Cajuns") who live within America's largest swamp is an interesting mix of culture and nature. For 30 days, the network followed these swampers during the annual alligator hunt — calling it "a uniquely American story of a proud and skillful people fighting to maintain an ancient way of life in a rapidly modernizing world."

The series debuted last night to solid reception — with many websites lighting up about the record 13-foot "monster gator" killed during a hunt in the cypress groves. Animal rights activists may not be impressed by the brutality of it all, but History Channel does its best to tone down the violence of the hunt. It's especially disconcerting to hear one of the hunters point out that a popular swimming hole is just a few yards away from the kill. If there's one thing the show hints at early, it's that living in these conditions comes with some dangerous company.

Check out the gator clip from the show below. "Swamp People" airs each Sunday at 9 p.m. (ET) on the History Channel.

Michael d'Estries ( @michaeldestries ) covers science, technology, art, and the beautiful, unusual corners of our incredible world.

'Swamp People' kill 13-foot monster gator
New reality series on History Channel profiles people living in Louisiana's Atchafalaya River Basin swamp.