For most people, coming across a 920-pound alligator with a mouth full of sharp teeth sounds like a nightmare, but Jeff Gregg called it a dream. “We’re really blessed. In the South they’re the largest predator that we have, they’re magnificent creatures.”
Gregg, along with his son, Justin Gregg, and long-time friend Scott Evans, killed the 13-foot, 6-inch alligator on the first day of hunting season in Lake Eufaula, Alabama, the Dothan Eagle reported.
“We went to get a big gator,” said Gregg, who is from Birmingham, Alabama. “We were going to take as long as it took to get the right gator, and just by luck within 30 minutes out in the lake we saw it.”
The gator didn’t give in without a fight. It escaped from a three-pronged hook attached to a fishing pole and swam another 75 yards before the group could snag him again.
They resorted to using harpoons to bring in their catch. “Then we dispatched him using a 5-inch knife,” Gregg said. “It is really, really rare to just hop in the boat and find one this big. Last time we hunted for three days straight and were only able to find a 9 footer.”
Gregg plans to mount the gator, but Evans told AL.com that they won’t let the 250 pounds of meat go to waste — they’re planning a huge Labor Day cookout.
This alligator is the second-heaviest catch ever made during a regulated hunt. Last year, another hunter brought down a 15-foot, 9-inch alligator, which weighed in at 1,011.5 pounds, although about 115 pounds of that was a deer in the gator’s stomach.