Watch Florida man vs. gator: Man wrangles 8-foot alligator with bare hands on busy street

An 8-foot alligator was no match for a Florida man after he wrangled the reptile with his bare hands over the weekend.

In the video, the unruly alligator is seen walking past Jacksonville police officers as he made his way into the street. Bystanders watched as the man, Mike Dragich, a licensed alligator trapper, caught the alligator by his tail and then sat on top of him so he wouldn't escape. Dragich, with no shoes on, got the upper hand of the alligator and the crowd began to cheer.

Picking up the alligator like a baby, Dragich showed that this scary looking 8-foot alligator was no match for him. Dragich celebrated his victory by parading around with the reptile for everyone to see.

"The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office extends its gratitude to Nuisance Gator Trapper Mike Dragich for his professional assistance in safely removing an alligator from the roadway," Officer Maximo Morel-Sepulveda told USA TODAY in a statement. "His expertise in handling these wild animals ensured the safety of both our officers and our community members."

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Florida man vs. Florida alligator

Dragich told FOX 35 TV that prior to the alligator rescue, he was enjoying a hockey game with his children when he got the call about the 8-foot alligator who took control of the residential area. The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office reached out to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission for help. With no equipment handy, Dragich arrived at the scene and tamed the giant beast, the news outlet said.

USA TODAY contacted the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and Dragich for comment.

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This isn't Dragich first time making headlines for subduing a gator. In June 2023, he faced-off against one of his toughest competitors yet; a 10-foot alligator.

At a local elementary school the reptile took up residence and claimed the area in one parking spot. Without hesitation Dragich showed the gator who’s boss by corralling it, securing it with a catch pole and -- with the assistance of several first responders -- wrestling it into submission.

"I felt like Batman, for real, you know, I show up. I walk out. There are a lot of comments saying I look like Stone Cold walking up to this alligator," Dragich told FOX 35 TV .

When a reptile is captured, it can be returned to its home or euthanized if it presents a danger to people, pets or property. In this case, since the gator was found near a school, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission allowed Dragich to harvest the reptile. He said he planned to donate the meat to the local community.

Ahjané Forbes is a reporter on the National Trending Team at USA TODAY. Ahjané covers breaking news, car recalls, crime, health, lottery and public policy stories. Email her at Follow her on InstagramThreads and X (Twitter) @forbesfineest.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Florida man wrangles alligator with bare hands: Watch wild video