January 09, 2010

Alabama Alligator

These first two pictures were taken by a KTBS helicopter flying over Lake Wiess, which is about ninety miles north of Birmingham, Alabama.

The helicopter pilot, and the game wardens on the ground, were in communication via two-way radios.

Here is a transcript of their conversation:

Air1, have you a visual on the 'gator? Over.

Approaching inlet now. Over.

Roger Air1.

'Gator sighted. Looks like it has a small animal in its mouth...moving in. Over.

Roger Air1.

Oh, crap, it's a deer!

Confirm, Air1...did you say 'deer?' Over.

Roger...a deer in its mouth..lookds like a full-sized buck...that's a big 'gator, boys. We're gonna need more men. Over.

Roger, Air1...can you give me a idea on size of animal? Over.

It's a big one...twenty-five feet, at least; please advise 'gator is heading to inlet..do I pursue? Over.

The deer was later found to be a mature stag, measuring eleven feet!

This alligator was found between Centre, and Leesburg, Alabama, near a house! Game wardens were forced to shoot the alligator.

Anita and Charlie Rogers could hear the beast bellowing in the night. Their neighbors had been telling them that they had seen a mammoth alligator in the waterway that runs behind their house, but they dismissed the stories as exaggerations.

"I didn't believe it," Charles Rogers said, but after the alligator was killed, they realized the stories were, if anything, understated.

Alabama Parks and Wildlife game wardens had to shoot the beast.

Joe Goff, a 6'5" tall game warden, shown below, walks past the twenty-eight foot, one inch long alligator that he helped shoot and kill in the Rogers' back yard.

The above report was sent to me in an email. I'm assuming it's all true, having seen a man reel in a seventy-five pound catfish at Guntersville Dam, which isn't all that far from Centre, Alabama. It took two men to hold it in their arms, while I snapped a photo of it. That was a small one, considering reports of catfish as large as school buses, spotted lying on the bottom of the lake, next to the dam.

I guess Alabama is a lot like Texas, in that respect..everything seems to grow just a little bit bigger!

But what I'm wondering is, what was that alligator doing in that part of Alabama?


Anonymous said...

That's pretty bizarre. I know when the Spanish came to Florida they recorded some alligators of great length but I didn't know there were any still out there.

Jan said...

Hermit..I think there were alligators close to that size in Florida where I was a guest, once.

Their place was right on Lake Harris, in Leesburg, and you could look out over the lake and see, literally, dozens of monstrous sized alligators.

It was not the perfect place to go for a stroll, especially at night. :)

povertyflatsusa said...

Jan, the size of that gator is amazing enough, but to find it that far north...Hmmmm.
I grew up in South Frorida around the Everglades and we had some really large ones down there, but I didn't think they got that big. Down in the Florida Keys where we lived for a couple of years, there were some salt-water Crocodiles that that were well over twenty feet. We used to see them when we were fishing in the mangrove swamps north of Key Largo.
I am more amazed at how that Texas gator got all the way up to North Alabama anyhow.
Great post. Have a really good day.
Don & Sue

Jan said...

'am more amazed at how that Texas gator got all the way up to North Alabama anyhow.'

Well, Don..I'm not too sure that alligator was from Texas, but you couldn't tell it from the size! LOL

If that's a alligator that, somehow, made it from Florida because of some of the hurricanes in recent history, I'd hate to think about the size of some of those snakes that can't be accounted for from when that happened!


Anonymous said...

KTBS is not an Alabama tv station-it is Shreveport, LA.
It looks a little green for north alabama if this happen in Jan or Dec. I think this something recirculating.

Jan said...

Anonymous..thanks for your comment, and for bringing to my attention, the error of the story, which obviously has been in circulation for awhile.

As for my post,it seems that this version combines pictures taken in Georgia, of an alligator swimming with a deer in its mouth, and a photo of a large alligator, killed in Texas, and the location changed to Lake Weiss in Alabama.

The pictures are authentic, of two different alligators, but neither of them were sighted, or killed, in Alabama.

I always try to check out the stories I receive via email, using Snopes, but when I checked, I found nothing concerning this particular story. After receiving your comment, I checked again, but found nothing, then tried new search words and found it.

Thanks again for bringing this to my attention...next time, I will try to be more careful in checking the source. :)