Florida is full of deadly critters, but alligators are easily one of most terrifying of them all - and for most of us, we try to avoid them like the plague. Not everyone thinks they are so scary, though. One Florida man loves to get up close and personal with the 'gators.
Christopher Gillette, or as he is known on Instagram as Crocodile Chris, is much like the Florida version of the Crocodile Hunter. He is just a simple man with a love of all things dangerous. Snakes, alligators, sharks - you name it, he has a photo with it.
His Instagram page is full of photos of Florida wildlife, including rattlesnakes, alligators, snapping turtles, and more. He works directly with many of the animals as a wildlife biologist, photographer, and conservationist, and he also gives underwater alligator tours to the public.
Once in a while, he will post a video with his friend Casper the alligator. A seemingly docile reptile that enjoys a good pat on the head. A video he posted with Casper, who has huge teeth and an intimidating growl, went viral in December, so he decided to upload another video.
Check it out below:
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Volume up!!! Casper bellowing during one of my underwater gator tours this past weekend!! My last video of Casper bellowing like this went viral, so I figured I’d make another 😂🐊I love it when he does this and lets me hold his chin like that. What does that sound mean?? Aggression?? Angry? Hungry? None of the above!!! Those are the first answers most people think when they hear this but it really has nothing to do with any of that, and can be quite the opposite!! Alligators can bellow when feeling amorous for courtship, or also just to announce their presence and/or territory. There are a lot of myths about bellowing, such as the meaning as explained above or that it is always done in the water or only done in the breeding season, both disproven in this video. They’ll bellow year round and on land, but with WAY more frequency in the breeding season and it is usually in the water. When in the water the male’s bellow has so much low frequency bass it will cause the water to ripple up and off the back in drops, commonly called the water dance. The sound is so powerful you can feel it in your chest when you’re close! They will often bellow in response to loud noises like thunder or airboats, it’s so cute that they’re trying to talk to the thunder ❤️I love being able to touch them and feel the powerful sound!! It’s truly incredible, especially when I’m in the water with them!! If you’re interested in my gator tours, checkout one of the previous posts on it or email me ChrisGilletteWildlife@gmail.com My last video of him bellowing like this went viral, so I figured I’d make another! At the @evergladesoutpost #Alligator #gator #bellow #alligatorbellow #everglades #florida #southflorida #adventure #coexist #respect #reptile #adventure #floridalife #southflorida #miami
In a lengthy post, he explains the animal's bellow and what it can mean, and he even mentions how much he loves hearing it!
"I love being able to touch them and feel the powerful sound!! It’s truly incredible, especially when I’m in the water with them," a portion of the post reads.
Here's a video of his face next to Casper's while they swim together:
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Casper and I hanging out today on my underwater alligator tour 🐊😎🐊 The sun was a little too bright in the video but Casper looked so cute I had to post it! I’ve worked with Casper over ten years, but we don’t know his age. There’s actually no way to tell the age of an alligator just by looking at them, their size is largely dictated by diet and environmental factors, not age. He could be 30 or 70 and there would be no way to tell. Some records claim to have gators over 100. If you want to meet Casper and join us for a swim, the next available dates I will be running underwater gator tours is January 12,18,19 February 1,2, 8, 9, 15, 16, 22, 23.. I offer these tours for people to be able to enjoy and experience being in the water with gators or to get their own underwater photos/footage or pickup the photo package I offer. The tour appeals to adventurers and animal lovers who just want to check out the gators too, and I offer to shoot a photo package as well. If you want to come shoot me an email and I’ll send info on details/pricing(can vary, so email only for pricing!) ChrisGilletteWildlife@gmail.com Let me know if you want to go!! Share the water with alligators in a safe and controlled environment! This is done safely at the Everglades Outpost Wildlife Rescue in Homestead, Fl. It is for people of any skill level, you don’t have to be scuba certified, just have an interest in wildlife! This is a no contact experience! Observation and photos only at the @evergladesoutpost Mask by @cressi1946 #underwaterphotography #uwphotography #gator #alligator #everglades #florida #southflorida #adventure #coexist #respect #reptile #adventure #floridalife #southflorida #mia
Admittedly the videos give a lot of viewers anxiety. One commenter asked a question we all were wondering, "so like god forbid one day one of those gators snap out and attack... what’s gonna be the excuse or reasoning? dead serious question."
And of course, Chris responded like a champ: "i have gators literally try to bite me daily, been doing this over ten years. You think this just happened today or something?"
If you think you are also brave enough to get too close for comfort with these deadly creatures you can book an underwater alligator tour with Chris here.