Hitting the road in about 3 hours to catch a plane to florida for an alligator hunt. Night time by airboat and using a pig sticker, only because the guide wont let me strip nekkid and go for the throat with my teeth!
Wait i don't understand, why do you put it in the boat living?
When it's warm the meat goes bad pretty quickly. Once you get where there is a walk in cooler to drop the temps it's fine. I'd guess if you're just going after the hide it doesn't matter as much. Alligator meat is spendy though, most trappers won't kill an animal until the very end. Even if you're only after the hide/trophy they still sell the meat to a processor.
I won't say it doesn't add to the 'thrill' though. After the big one was secured we took it back to the trailer. I only go 160-170 pounds, sat on the tail to keep that end in the boat. He twitched once and almost threw me in the lake.
The 2 in the first picture were taken with another trapper as complaints. Lady who lives on a lake had the big one and one other that had setup up daily outside her back door. She wasn't sure if the one we took was the bigger or the smaller one. The smaller was in a retention pond next to an apartment complex. The trappers say the usual nuisance gator is in the 4-6' range, so about the size of the smaller in the picture. The real big guy was another nuisance call with the first guy I went with.
I was about a month early for weather down there, next month the nuisance guys take 4-10 calls a day. Right now it's 3-5 a month. They knew I was coming down though so they saved up 5 calls for me to go on. We tried on 4, got 2. It was a good time. On the downside, you get what you get as far as size. I got lucky with the 9', the lady called in the complaint the night before we went out. But on the upside the guys I was with don't just take you out for 1 animal and drop you off. If you get 20 that day, you get 20. And the guys I was with were good guys. We ate lunch and hit a gun shop in the middle, drank beer and BS'd for a few hours after. All around it was a fun day. For $500 for the hunt, it's worth the money. Then if you want one of the alligators they charge what a processor would pay them. The one I kept, about $250.
The trophy style hunts, lots more $$$ and if the 1st gator you get is the size you're after, you might be headed back to the truck depending on the guide. The guy I did my first night wasn't one of them, we were spending the night on the swamp either way. But it was $1500 for the hunt, 8'ish foot alligator. The big guy, if I had kept him and had a mount done I'd probably be into him for 20k. Way outside my budget.
If you're interested PM me and I'll send you their #'s.
I ended up taking 4 with the first guy and 2 with the nuisance guys. Way better than a day at disney world IMO.
I have always wondered, are they fishy smelling?
Not that I noticed. The big guys have a bit of a musk though.
I'm having the 9.5' guy processed and meat shipped to me, and then a fully body mount for my man cave. Everyone up here has deer/antelope etc, NO one has an alligator I'm having another 9'ish footer done as a euro mount and the hide tanned, donated the meat to the trapper.
I think I'm getting drug on a disney trip next summer, odds are really good I'll be spending a day chasing alligators again. And the 2 friends that backed out of this trip really have been regretting their decisions since I sent them some pictures, so good chance I'll be doing it again sooner. I've never done a guided hunt before this trip, good use of the $ compared to strapping 50lbs of gear on my back and hiking up a mountain looking for elk