Not to be outdone by recent alligator records being broken left and right in Mississippi, Florida hunters have stepped up with their own noteworthy catches. Last week Ben and Louann Williams took a monster of an alligator from Lake George that measured 13 feet, seven inches long. According to The Florida Times-Union, the catch is still waiting to be weighed, but gators of a similar size can tip the scales anywhere between 700 to 870 pounds. Ben Williams was not surprised; he had already made it into the Florida top 10 with a 2008 catch weighing 839 pounds.
“You couldn’t see him anymore but you could see the wake,” said his wife Louann. “It looked like a monster in the water.”
After dispatching the animal with a bangstick, the Florida couple had an easier time of transporting the animal than their Mississippi compatriots. Whereas the Magnolia State’s record-takers were limited to smaller vessels due to the size of the Mississippi River, the Williams had the benefit of simply tying the monster gator to their boat.
Gadsden County’s Robert Duin and his family also nearly made it into the Florida record books based on length. Earlier this month, the Duin family caught a 14.1-foot gator that the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission (FWC) confirmed to be the second-longest alligator caught in the state.
“I couldn’t be prouder, we do a lot of hunting and fishing and stuff, so all of us to be together, it’s been very wonderful,” Robert Duin told WCTV.
Duin says that he knew there was a monster gator in the area and that they had been planning to go after the beast for months. When gator season rolled around, the Duin family wasted little time before heading out to Lake Talquin. Hunters there and in other parts of state are reporting plentiful gator numbers, which hover around two million according to the FWC.
“Nobody ever gives credit to the fish and game commission for the job they’ve done managing the resource,” said Ben Williams.
Florida’s current record for weight stands at a staggering 1,043 pounds. The Duins missed the length record by a mere two inches.
Williams’s alligator can be seen below:
The Duins’ gator can be seen here: