A DAD who is adamant that hunting and fishing are as vital as “God and country” has slaughtered a record-breaking 14ft-long alligator.
Posing alongside his teenage daughter, Derrick Snelson has posted photos of the 700lb whopper caught in Georgia, US, after a “cat-and-mouse” game of nearly six hours.
Derrick said he and daughter Shelby, 14, intend to “eat him”.
The hunter told Georgia Outdoor News: “I don’t know where I’m going to put him, but I am having him mounted.
“That thing (could be) 80 or 90 years old. I’m 39, so just out of respect that he lived that long, I felt like I needed to mount him.”
A five-strong crew – including Derrick, his daughter, pal Kirk Nozaki and two people from Lethal Guide Services – spotted the big gator “by a lily pad” in Lake Eufaula, in Quitman County.
But, Derrick says, none of them realised just how large the creature was until they’d hauled him in.
Their lengthy hunt wasn’t easy as their feisty quarry barrel-rolled on them, and would alternatively surface for about 10 seconds and then become submerged for 45 minutes.
SHOT WITH CROSSBOW
Derrick told the publication that the team cast a big treble hook, attached to a heavy-duty fishing rod, and they “just stayed at it”.
Their patience paid off, as they eventually managed to get a big hook in to the alligator, put a rope around him, hauled him into the boat and “shot him with a crossbow through the tail” to mark him with a buoy in “case he broke off and we could tell where he went”.
But, the equally determined gator barrel-rolled again – so Derrick shot him in the head with a 40-caliber Glock.
The 14ft 1.75 ins catch has set a new state record, as it’s slightly longer that the previous placeholder, a Georgia alligator stretching 13ft, 10.75ins long, caught six years ago.
A chuffed Derrick said the animal was “mammoth, it was crazy to see something like that”.
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He said the hunting crew were only able to roll his body into the boat because they were all running on “adrenaline”, as he joked, “there’s no handlebar on him”.
Derrick told WSB-TV that fishing and hunting are nearly as important as “God and country”.
The broadcaster says that the alligator hunting season in Georgia runs from mid-August until early October.