29 Apr 2006

Florida Fly Fisherman Attacked by Alligator

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The Okeechobee News reports that a wading fisherman was bitten last Monday by a ten foot alligator.

Sixty-six-year-old Sam Crutchfield of Fort Pierce was attacked by an alligator while fly fishing on Lake Istokpoga Monday afternoon. The alligator, which is believed to be at least 10 feet long, grabbed Mr. Crutchfield by the hip as he stood in 41-inch deep water.

“I had been wade fishing off the south end of Big Island for over three-and-one-half hours without a bite. Around noon I moved into the deeper water. Suddenly, I was knocked sideways,” said Mr. Crutchfield. “Something locked onto me by the right hip and wouldn’t let go. I started punching him as hard as I could. He finally released me and I took off toward our flats boat. I called to my partner that I had been bitten and he wouldn’t believe me.

“He still wouldn’t believe me until I dropped my shorts and you could see the imprint of its teeth around my hip. My leg is so bruised that it looks like I’ve been hit by a car going 80 miles an hour,” added Mr. Crutchfield, a fifth-generation Floridian.

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