A different kind of hunt...

Discussion in 'Bowhunting forum' started by Captainkidd, Jan 15, 2008.

  1. Captainkidd

    Captainkidd New Member

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    I grew up in the Midwest and now live in south Florida. I had to explore some new bow hunting options here so decided to do an alligator hunt. If you have never tried a Gator hunt, check this out. I will try to give you a feel for what its all about. This was my first crack at it and I really wanted to take one with a bow.

    Enjoy!

    Imagine being in a 10' aluminum jon boat in the middle of a steamy night in a swamp in South Florida surrounded by dozens of extremely brazen Gators. (not to mention a bunch of huge spiders and a few unidentified snakes).

    Sliding quietly through the water you are passing within inches of the noses of several curious Gators. They sit absolutely motionless even though you are less than two feet in front of their noses and staring them in the eye with the red light of your head lamp. You pass by one, then another and another trying to judge how big they are, not quite sure if you want to put an arrow into the biggest one in the area or settle for a smaller and less dangerous one.

    You see a set of eyes in the distance that appear much wider than the ones you have passed and realize that you may have spotted your quarry! The sense of nervous anticipation builds rapidly as you get closer and closer. You tell yourself that this is what you came for and wonder how many people in this world could maintain there composure in this situation. You slide quietly toward him wondering if he is going to sit and wait for you or explode in a burst of energy shooting toward you or disappear into the murky water. He is still there, now only 30 feet away, then 20 then 10! As you draw the bow he lets out a deep rumbling growl, warning you that you are in his territory. The time has come and you realize you will only get one shot at this! There he is, maybe 5 feet in front of you. You try to bury your nerves and focus only on the task at hand which is making the perfect shot and nothing else. You let the arrow fly and the explosion from the Gator sends a wall of frothy water in to the boat! The line goes peeling out of your reel and the float flies off of the bow and in to the water! You've done it! You have attached an arrow, line and buoy to a big old South Florida Gator but now what?

    This is where it really gets exciting. Eventually the float stops and you make your way over to it. You reach in to the hot, murky water and nervously grab the line, and slowly give it a pull...kaboom, the gator is off again! The momentum of the gator spins the tiny boat around and you are off again!

    After several attempts you get nearer and nearer until, in the dim glow of your headlamp, you see the arrow and realize that this very large and unhappy gator is directly underneath the boat! Even though you are in less than 3 feet of water you can't see anything, it is way too murky. you SLOWLY pull on the line, making sure that you are not tangled in it in case he makes another explosive run. Bang stick at the ready, you strain to see anything in the murky water and all of a sudden he appears right below you in the murky water, maybe 10 inches away! Quickly you position the bang stick and KABOOM!!! You hit your mark, just below the waters surface.

    Now you get to reach down and quickly grab the jaws and hold on tight, hoping that the 223 bullet did its job. As you lean over the edge of the boat with both hands on the jaws of a gator far too large to lift in to the boat you glance up to see several sets of curious eyes only a few feet away and coming closer to see what all the commotion is about. You quickly but carefully get the jaws taped shut and head for dry land holding your gator along side the boat wondering how big it really is. The few moments at the waters edge are again quite exciting, knowing what is lurking just beneath the surface of the murky water.

    Whew, now thats what I call a hunt!

    My first gator. 9 foot 3 inches long. We didn't get a chance to weigh it but I would guess about 250#
     
  2. Wheely

    Wheely Wheely Threads

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    Wow!!! That sounds like a hunt for adrenaline junkies, but I am not one...:biggrin1:

    Nice Gator!!
     

  3. MichiganHunter

    MichiganHunter Senior Member

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  4. Jay Are

    Jay Are Junior Member

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    That's One heck of a Hunt!!!!! Nice gator!:rockon:
     
  5. great story, that sucker looks scary even dead.
     
  6. and welcome to the site, again that was a great story, thanks for sharing
     
  7. bullfiddle

    bullfiddle Movin on up!!!

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    Great story...I wanna go now....:rockon: :rockon:
     
  8. I missed

    I missed Senior Member

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    so did the gun kill it?????????????......................what was the point of the arrow???
     
  9. QSA

    QSA One eyed/Gutless wonder

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    Poke salad annie
    Gator ate tour granney

    Boy that is one big gator, But looks like fun.
     
  10. IChim2

    IChim2 IChim2 and he's a shooter

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    I love that song.:rockon:
     
  11. IChim2

    IChim2 IChim2 and he's a shooter

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    That looks like fun.Here where i live,in the fall a buddy and me go after the big carp,buffalo and gar down in the creeks and rivers that feed the mississippi and it's not uncommon to get them in the 30-50lb range....not as exciting as what you have,but it's a lot of fun.
     
  12. Shortshaft

    Shortshaft Member

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    Beats the heck out of gigging frogs!
     
  13. Captainkidd

    Captainkidd New Member

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    Yes, the bangstick killed it. The point of the arrow and line is to get the gator close enough to hit it with the bangstick. It is illegal to shoot them with a gun because for one the kill zone is tiny, probably about the size of a walnut and two, they sink.

    In order to ensure nearly a 100% recovery rate a gator must be attached to a line via bow, snatch hook, gig ect. It must then be dispatched boatside with the use of a device know as a bang stick. This holds a bullet or shotshell on the end of a long stick and fires the round when hit against an object.

    The gator is a highly regulated species that has made incredible strides at reestablishing a population that was on the brink of extinction as recently as the 70s. There Are now around 4,500 public hunting permits sold yearly in Florida alone.