Huge Alligator Stalking Outside of Children's Pool Area Shocks Viewers

A large alligator found its way outside a Tampa, Florida apartment just feet away from people at a nearby pool, terrifying the internet.

The viral TikTok, captioned, "Only in Florida #tampaflorida #wildlife #animalcontrol," has been viewed 4.2 million times and liked 705,500 times since it was shared on May 28. TikToker @Shanteria____ shared the 47-second clip from her apartment window.

According to Live Science, alligators are reptiles, and only two species exist, the American and Chinese alligators, although there are numerous species of crocodiles. Alligators have wide and rounded snouts, and they can get up to 11 feet in length, weighing almost half a ton. Alligators in the United States live in the southern area of the country, and they are found in rivers, lakes, ponds and swamps.

According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, alligators don't usually bite people, and fatalities are not common. Over the past 10 years, there have been eight unprovoked bites in Florida on average per year that require professional medical assistance. The likelihood of a resident in Florida becoming "seriously injured" during an unprovoked encounter with an alligator is around one in 3.1 million.

In the clip, just feet away from the window an alligator was lying in the grass near a sidewalk. Nearby in the background were people at a gated pool, including children, and to the right of the alligator was a sandpit, presumably for volleyball. A few people were in the vicinity a little too close for comfort to the alligator as well as they stood nearby to watch.

"Yo, look outside my apartment window," the woman filming said in the video. "This is literally right outside my apartment."

The woman panned the camera to show a child nearby inside staring out the window, and she zoomed in on the alligator, who wasn't moving.

"Oh my God, look at everybody at the pool," she added.

Suddenly, a man came over and slapped the alligator's tail.

"Oh, oh my God he crazy!" the TikToker said, as she screamed and the man ran the other way.

The alligator recoiled its tail as the woman said, "He's crazy" in regard to the man's move.

The child made some noise, to which the TikToker asked, "You see the alligator boo boo?"

"Yes," the boy said.

Suddenly, the alligator got up and started to slowly walk into the volleyball sandpit area, and the boy kept talking, even shouting, "No," at one point.

The alligator climbed over the barrier, landing in the sand and moving slightly until it found a place to stop.

In an update that has received 467,000 views on its own, the same alligator can be seen on the bank of a retention pond at the apartment complex as a man was in the process of wrangling him with ropes.

"A true Floridian came to the rescue!" the woman said in voice and text overlay. "There are tons of people that will do this for free all throughout Florida."

The man used the ropes to secure the animal's jaw shut, and he also had ropes tied around the alligator's neck as well. He threaded another rope through the ropes holding the gator's jaw shut, tying it down before the video cut off.

Alligator swimming in swamp
A large alligator stalking outside of a children's pool area is shocking viewers. Here, an American Alligator swimming in the swamp. CINDY LARSON/GETTY

Many people commented on the viral TikTok video, and 14,000 comments rolled in. People were shocked, and some honed in on the man who slapped the alligator's tail. "If he knew how fast those things really are, he wouldn't be doing that," a user said.

One TikToker pointed out the child's concern over the situation. "The baby [is] the only one properly concerned!" they wrote.

Some people made their own assumptions about Florida. "New York is not that bad after all," a TikToker said. Another user said that "Florida got more entertainment than California I see."

Another user questioned their desire to move to the state after watching the clip. "Maybe I don't wanna move to Florida like I thought," they wrote.

While a TikToker said they are now "suddenly super chill with it being 65 right now in Michigan."

A user said it's actually "one of the reasons I left Florida after five months," adding, "And that's a nope."

Some people didn't even notice the alligator at first. "Why did it take me a minute to realize it was an alligator right there?" a user asked. "I was looking at the pool."

Another user pointed out that "people don't realize how fast or how far a gator can run and jump."

Other comments included things like, "I'd never leave the house again," "Hell no, they too calm for him to just be sitting there," and "Omg...I'd never let my baby outside alone."

Newsweek reached out to TikToker @Shanteria____ for comment.

This isn't the only recent story involving alligators. A couple of cops wrangled an alligator outside a house in South Carolina. A man in Florida was bitten by an alligator in the middle of the night. In addition, a man was killed by an alligator in a frisbee hunt in Florida.