A Florida woman has posted videos to Facebook showing how she was forced to fend off an aggressive alligator who swam right up to her paddleboard.
Vicki Reamy Baker was paddling on a river at Silver Springs State Park when the animal, which appears to be 10-12 foot long, approached.
Ms Baker videoed the incident and could be heard in the recording telling the alligator: “What are you doing? Get away from me! Oh shit. No. Go away.” as it came towards her.
She pushed the creature away using her paddle, at which point it let out a long, menacing hiss.
"Ma’am, I would suggest backing up, considering you just made him pretty mad," a man off-camera could be heard telling Ms Baker.
In a second video, the alligator can be seen continuing to circle Ms Baker.
“Why are you messing with me? Why are you trying to bite me?” she asked it. “I’ve never had a ‘gator come after me like that before,” she then said. “Look how close he is to me. He came after me and tried to bite my paddleboard.”
Ms Baker also commented in a caption that it seemed someone had been feeding the alligator, causing it to become dangerous.
Most alligators are naturally afraid of humans but may lose that fear when people feed them, says the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission website.
Alligators are common in Florida, with the Commission estimating over a million of them can be found in the state.
“Feeding alligators teaches them to associate people with food. For that reason, it is illegal to feed wild alligators. Alligators seldom bite people for reasons other than food,” said the fact page on the Commission’s site.
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