Cyclist is seriously injured after falling off his bike then getting bitten by an 8-foot alligator in Florida
- The incident happened at Halpatiokee Regional Park in Stuart, Florida
- A witness said the man lost a tire while rounding a curve and fell into the water
- A trapper believes the alligator was ‘sitting on a nest’ near the edge
- The park, named ‘alligator water’ in the Seminole native language, is surrounded by 500 acres of wetland preserve home to gators and other species
A cyclist has been left with serious injuries after falling off his bike and immediately getting bit by an alligator at a Florida park Monday.
The attack happened at Halpatiokee Regional Park in Stuart, the Martin County’s Sheriff’s Office said, after the man fell off his bike and into some water.
A video shows the man, who has not been identified, being lifted into a Martin County Fire Rescue helicopter on a stretcher by paramedics. Deputies said he had been seriously injured.
The unidentified victim suffered serious injuries and was lifted into a helicopter by paramedics
The attack happened at Halpatiokee Regional Park in Stuart, Florida. The park is named after the Seminole words for ‘alligator water’ and is surrounded by 500 acres of wetlands
A short time later, a large alligator was captured in the vicinity, WPTV said, with reporter Jon Shainman sharing pictures and video of two gators in the back of a pickup truck with their jaws taped shut.
‘Trapper captured 8 and a half foot female gator likely responsible for attack at Halpatiokee park of bicyclist,’ Shainman wrote in a Twitter post.
Witness Charlie Shannon, who was walking his dog in the park when the man was attacked, told Fox29 that the victim had marks ‘all over his leg’ but mainly on his upper thigh.
‘He was hanging on roots like five feet below [the water],’ Shannon said. ‘It was hard to get him out.’
Thinking quickly, Shannon used his dog’s leash as a makeshift tourniquet after he and others helped the man out of the water.
Another witness, Scott Lorraine, said the victim was an accomplished cyclist but lost a tire going around a curve.
‘He slid out and the water is literally a couple of feet away and he went right into the water, and just as bad luck would be, the gator was right there,’ he said.
John Davidson, the trapper who caught the eight-foot gator said the animals are more aggressive in summer and told Fox29 on Monday that the creature was the third he had picked up that day.
‘She was sitting 10 feet off the bank when I showed up,’ Davidson said of the alligator, which will now be relocated.
‘That leads me to believe that she was a female and sitting on a nest somewhere close. So we’ll attempt to rescue the babies if we can,’ he added.
Halpatiokee, which means ‘alligator water’ in the language of the Seminole Native Americans, is a park surrounded by some 500 acres of wetland preserve area which is home to alligators along with other species including river otters.