ENGLEWOOD (FOX 13) - It's not uncommon to see alligators at Myakka Pines Golf Club. Many know the feeling of waiting for one to saunter across the green before taking their next shot.
It's not as often you see a gator suddenly sprint across the fairway, jump toward a water hazard, and then belly-flop into the pond. But that's exactly what happened last week to Linda Jameson and her golf partner, Mike.
Linda started recording when the alligator, which looks about five feet long, began walking across the fairway toward the nearby water.
She is heard saying, from behind the camera, there's a little gator on the fairway.
then she pans and says "and here's mike, waiting for the gator to cross."
At that moment, the alligator elevates onto its tip-toes and takes off toward the water. Linda manages to keep following the gator with her camera, until it leaps into the water hazard with a huge splash.
She says, "Whoa! Look how fast he went!"
We had the same reaction.
According to FWC, no one has officially studied how fast an alligator can run, and there are no documented cases where an alligator chased a person or other land animal. In other words, it may look scary, but the gator in Linda's video was likely running away from a perceived threat and would not likely come after a golfer.
"If you do find yourself in the extremely unlikely position of avoiding a lunging alligator, you should run in a straight line away from the alligator and its habitat, which is where the alligator will most likely retreat to. Regardless of how fast alligators can run, you should never approach an alligator that is on land," FWC said on its website.