71-year-old woman hospitalized after gator bite in Southwest Florida

A 71-year-old woman was attacked by a 10-foot alligator while gardening behind her San Carlos Park home Sunday evening, fire officials said.

It happened inside the Shadow Wood Preserve community shortly before 6 p.m. at a residence in the 18000 block of Cypress Haven Drive.

Fire officials said the victim was gardening behind her home about 20 feet from the water when the gator came from behind and attacked her.

Emergency crews say the woman was bitten on her leg.

Bystanders applied pressure to her injuries until paramedics arrived and flew her to the hospital as a trauma alert. Paramedics said the woman was awake and alert.

The alligator was captured by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission.

Three alligator attacks in three days

The incident marks the third alligator attack in three days in Southwest Florida.

On Friday, a man diving for golf balls at a Charlotte County golf course was attacked, and a young boy was bitten on his ankle while swimming in the peace river Saturday.

"Instances like this are very rare," said Brian Norris with the FWC. "It is odd that there have been so many in a short period of time."

Norris said this activity could be sparked by the fact that female alligators lay their eggs during this time in the summer.

Another reason could be humans feeding the reptiles. He said the alligators get comfortable and assimilate humans with food.

Norris adds that the increase of rain could not be helping either. That is because during the drought alligators get condensed and can't move very far. 

NBC2


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