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Published On: Sat, Aug 4th, 2012

Wally Weatherholt arrested in alligator attack after it bit off his hand

A Naples airboat captain, who had his hand bitten off by an alligator last month, was arrested Friday following an investigation into the attack by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission.

According to an arrest report from the Collier County Sheriff’s Office, 63-year-old Wallace “Wally” Weatherholt of Captain Doug’s Everglades Tours was charged with one count of unlawful feeding of an alligator which led to the alligator biting off his left hand.

According to reports, Weatherholt had taken an out-of-state family on an airboat tour and began feeding the alligator. He then allegedly began patting the water to bring the gator to the surface when it lunged out of the water and bit off his hand. Wildlife officials tracked downthe gator shortly after the incident, retrieving the captain’s hand from its stomach prior to it reportedly being euthanized.

According to FWC statistics:

Since 1948, Florida has averaged about five unprovoked bites per year. During that period, a little more than 300 unprovoked bites to people have been documented in Florida, with 22 resulting in deaths.

The FWC also claims that every year in the last 10 years, Florida has received an average of 16,000 nuisance alligator complaints.

Check out more of the details here.

 

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- Brian Attenberg, The Cavalier Expert in All Things Weird, Strange and Otherwise Odd

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