Record-Breaking 1,000-Plus-Pound Alligator Caught in Alabama River

Mike ChiariFeatured ColumnistAugust 19, 2014


A new standard in hunting has been set after a small crew in Alabama caught an alligator exceeding 1,000 pounds in weight Sunday. 

According to Jeff Dute of, Mandy Stokes, husband John Stokes and brother-in-law Kevin Jenkins and his two kids caught the gator in the Alabama River. An official weigh-in pegged it at 15 feet long and 1,011.5 pounds, making it the biggest gator ever legally killed in the state of Alabama.

As seen in this photo courtesy of's Kyle Hill, the crew needed a backhoe for support:'s Sharon Steinmann snapped a close-up photo that captures the gator's immense size:

The crew was well aware it had a big job on its hands, but the gator's measurables weren't obvious initially, per Dute.

"The whole time we were out there, we thought we were in a 16-foot boat. So doing some comparison to the size of the boat, we figured the gator might be 13 feet," John Stokes said. "Then Kevin found out it was a 17-foot boat, and we started looking at that gator again."

Khon2 News' photo illustrates the gator's size once again: 

Telegraph News released a photo of its enormous head:

Mandy Stokes admitted the crew could have easily been in over their heads, according to Dute: "If it wasn't for the grace of God, we never could have done it. At one time during this whole thing, I honestly thought, you know what; we didn't sign up for that."

Mandy said the gator was transported Sunday morning to Ken Owens' Autaugaville taxidermy shop. Once there, it will be skinned out, but after that the Stokes' aren't sure what comes next, per Dute.


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