I’ll admit, Free Willy was one of my favorite movies as a kid way back in the day.
I mean c’mon, that movie had me wanting to adopt a killer whale and become best friends with it at the age of six-years-old.
However, you realize as you get older that killer whales actually have the capability to seriously hurt or kill you (it’s called a killer whale… hello), and it’s just a sweet storyline for a movie.
With that being said, this woman right here has no fear of adopting and befriending a creature that has the capability to rip you to shreds…
And I’m talking about an alligator.
Let me introduce you to a woman who goes by the name of Gabby Nikolle on Instagram, a veterinary technician and alligator rescuer who has developed quite the friendly relationship with this big gator named Casper at a Florida wildlife sanctuary called Everglades Outpost.
“My name is Gabby, I’m 25 years old, and I rescue/work with/ train nuisance alligators! A nuisance alligator is one that was deemed dangerous to people, pets, or livestock. In Florida, trappers are sent out to remove these alligators, and most are harvested and sold for their meat.
Our team rescues nuisance alligators out of people’s back yards and pools, for free! And then we bring them to Everglades Outpost to live out the rest of their lives (by law you have to kill them or put them in captivity, they cannot be released or relocated).
I’ve been working with animals for 10 years, and have been vegetarian for over 14 years. For the last 3 years, my work has mostly focused on alligators, but I work with a lot of different animals!”
She has shared a number of videos swimming with Casper, many of which that have gone mega viral, and she explains why she able to swim with Casper without being attacked.
A rescue alligator, she explains that the reason Casper doesn’t bite her is because he doesn’t see her as a food source, or a threat. However she cautions that she could be bitten if she puts her hands in the wrong spot.
“Casper is a rescued nuisance alligator that lives at Everglades Outpost and is part of Christopher Gillette’s underwater alligator tours, where people can actually get in the water with Casper.
The state kills about 8,000 nuisance alligators every year. Anything from eating a dog, being fed by humans, or even just existing too close to people are all reasons why an alligator would be deemed a nuisance and euthanized.
Casper lives in a 30,000 gallon lagoon, and helps teach people about these misunderstood animals.”
Needless to say, this woman has a lot more guts than me. I’ve seen and heard too many videos and stories of people getting attacked by these prehistoric looking creatures to ever get in the water with one.
Hell, I won’t even get in the water where an alligator could live, let alone willingly dive alongside one… nope, no way.
Gabby’s videos have garnered millions and millions of views and you can check out some of other videos and pictures here:
“You can come meet Casper the rescued nuisance alligator safely during Christopher Gillette’s underwater alligator tours at Everglades Outpost.”
“I love educating people on how to co-exist with wildlife, and I love saving animals! My actual job is a veterinary technician, so all of the pictures you see on my page is during my free time, it’s all volunteer.
If you want to help support us, the best thing you can do is to like and share my photos, and also like and share my videos on my YouTube Channel. Thank you so much for following and supporting me!”