Survival Animal Attacks

Elderly Florida Man Needs 50 Staples After Alligator Attack

"I was just strolling along listening to my radio"
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elderly man bitten by alligator morning walk
The alligator attacked the man before daybreak. Florida Fish and Wildlife

An alligator bit an unidentified, 79-year-old man while the man was out for an early morning walk near his home in Naples, Florida on July 13. The attack occurred around 5 a.m. at Forest Glen Golf Course and Country Club, according to Fox 4 News.

The victim, who asked not to be identified, called 911 immediately after the attack and calmly reported what happened. He said that he was walking in the middle of the street when the alligator “came from out of nowhere” and latched onto his leg.

“I just got bit by an alligator in my community and I’m walking home,” the man said in a recording of the 911 call that was obtained by Fox 4. “I was just strolling along listening to my radio, listening to Willie’s Roadhouse.”

He was life-flighted by helicopter to a local hospital, where doctors treated the wound on his leg and then discharged him. His injuries consisted mainly of a large bite on his knee, which required more than 50 staples to close.  

“There’s a lot of skin ripped off I can see,” he said at one point during the 911 call.

Although he originally told dispatchers that he thought the alligator was around three feet long, licensed trappers found a 6-foot, 9-inch female gator at the scene. Witnesses and local law enforcement confirmed that it was the same alligator that attacked the elderly man, and it was promptly removed from the 630-acre residential community. (Forest Glen has declined to comment on the incident.)

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“Go figure, out for a walk to stay healthy,” he told the dispatcher, who replied: “And you get bit by an alligator.”

Because of the time of year and the fact that it was still dark out, officials believe the gator was defending its nest when it attacked. Female alligators typically lay clutches of eggs in late June or early July, according to FWC. They’ll incubate the eggs for more than 60 days until they hatch. They’re extremely protective of their nests during this time, especially around dawn and dusk when predators are most likely to be on the prowl.