TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Some may know it’s not unusual for alligators to turn on their own kind, but you may not comprehend the phenomenon until you see it happen mere yards away from you.
That’s what happened to Tammy Shaw, who captured the spectacle on camera on Aug. 4 in Silver Springs, Marion County.
Shaw told WKMG she was paddling through the spring on her inflatable paddleboard when she came across the gator with another alligator in its mouth.
“I was fascinated just by the sheer size of the gator and the one he was eating,” Shaw said in an interview with the news outlet. “I wasn’t too afraid because he was obviously busy.”
Shaw said she only became concerned once the gator went under the water.
“Where was he gonna pop up?” she wondered.
One viewer who commented on the video wrote, “I never knew they would actually eat one of their own.” Another comment answered, “Me either.”
According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, cannibalism is listed as a top mortality factor for gators, followed by intraspecific fighting, and hunting by humans.
FWC says female alligators rarely exceed 10 feet in length, but males can grow to be much larger. Florida’s state record for length was a 14 foot 3-1/2 inch male from Lake Washington in Brevard County.
The Florida record for weight was a 1,043 pound (13 feet 10-1/2 inches long) male from Orange Lake in Alachua County.