“I’ve done this many, many times.” But Jimmy Williams can’t remember anything like this during a fishing trip on Mobile Bay. “I left right here and when I returned I came back to investigate the alligator.”
What he didn’t expect was what happened next. “I didn’t feed the alligator at all, of course, this one, being a large gator, started coming towards me and I turned and started paddling away. It pretty much trailed me.”
Not only was he following, there was a wake coming from around his mouth and Williams says he saw teeth.
The video captured by a visitor to a nearby restaurant quickly went viral. Once Williams saw it, it wasn’t quite what he remembered. “I thought he was closer when I was coming back.”
He considers himself to be a pretty good kayaker but staying inside a kayak had never been so important. “I was sort of thinking that too, just got to keep steady and all that,” says Williams.
Gator encounters are not unusual on the bay. “Small ones are usually inquisitive about stuff, the mid-range ones try to leave you alone but these big ones they are protective.” This one seemed to be all that and more. “You really have to have your wits about you when you are on a kayak out here and try to respect the animal and usually you are okay.”