Gator Launches Out of the Water To Steal Child’s Fish and Swims Off with Entire Fishing Rod While He’s At It

by Lauren Boisvert

In another harrowing story of alligator presumptuousness out of Florida, a gator in Palm Coast not only stole a 7-year-old’s bass, but he took his rod, too.

Sean MacMahon was fishing with his son, Dawson MacMahon, on Thursday when a gator sped up to the shore, launched itself out of the water, and chomped down on Dawson’s catch. Dawson was struggling to pull in the bass before the alligator got it, describing it as “a fighter.” His father was behind the camera, doling out words of encouragement.

When the alligator showed up, the boy immediately let go of his pole and stepped back. The gator swam away, dragging the pole behind him into the water.

The alligator was small, most likely an adolescent, but it’s still frightening to see just how fast they really are. Luckily, Dawson wasn’t too close, and could quickly step away to safety.

When Sean MacMahon posted the video on Facebook, many friends commented that Dawson was very lucky. “So glad he was smart enough to drop that pole,” said one commenter. Another user wrote, “Woah. That gator has no fear of humans at all.” True, nothing usually stands in the way of a gator and its prey. Not even if it’s attached to a hook.

Florida Man Traps Gator in a Trashcan

On Tuesday, Eugene Bozzi took made a split-second decision to catch an alligator in a trashcan when the 6-foot reptile trespassed on his neighbor’s lawn.

“Somebody’s gotta step up and do something, we all got to look out for each other right?” Bozzi told WESH 2. He backed the alligator into a corner and dropped the lid on it when he got the head in the can. The alligator thrashed and hissed, not like that one bit. But Bozzi finally got the gator in the can; he then wheeled it over to a retention pond and dropped the trashcan. The gator slithered out and into the water.

The alligator is considered what the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission calls a nuisance gator. That’s anything larger than 4 feet that poses a threat to people, pets, or property.

The FWC saw the video of Bozzi trapping the gator and shared some words of wisdom on their Twitter page: “Concerned about an alligator?” they wrote, “Don’t grab a garbage can, call our hotline at 866-FWC-GATOR (866-392-4286) & we can dispatch a REAL alligator trapper.”

There are between 1.3 and 2 million alligators in Florida; with 21.4 million people in the state, that’s one gator per 10 to 15 Floridians. Not a huge number, but still, I’d take no gators in a group of people over one any day. It’s best to just leave them be, but always keep a sharp eye out, and call the professionals when you need to.