by Shawn Skipper - Wednesday, July 17, 2013
Given that the large, toothy and relatively dangerous reptiles known as alligators have called Florida home for, well, forever, you'd think that the human beings that called the state home would be wary of them.
That didn't appear to have been the case for at least one Florida teen, who was reportedly attacked after kicking what he claims he thought was a log floating alongside him in a Geneva, Fla. river on July 8.
The victim, Andrew Hudson, told Florida Fish and Wildlife investigators that he knew there were gators in the area, but that he didn't suspect the nearly 10-foot long mass behind him to be anything more than a log. After being kicked, the now riled gator swam up to Hudson and attacked, dragging him under the water.
The 17-year-old tussled with the gator underwater, and fortunately he was able to break free. He scrambled for shore, and emerged from the water sporting a head wound from the gator's bite. He wrapped his shorts around his head to control the bleeding while a friend ran for help.
Hudson was treated by local doctors, and required a series of stitches and staples to close the puncture wounds on his head. The state dispatched a trapper to find the alligator shortly after the incident.
Given that I'm not from Florida, or any gator-bearing state, I won't try to argue that folks should just stop swimming in reptile-infested waters. I didn't grow up with their lifestyle. That said, Hudson's kick seems questionable. Why kick anything when you know you're in that kind of territory? Admittedly, the gator may have been planning to attack him anyway (looking inconspicuous in the water is actually a fairly common hunting technique for them), but agitating the predator more or less sealed the deal.
Thankfully, Hudson escaped this one with treatable injuries. Don't kick things, folks. Especially if you don't know what they are.
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