Three Legged Alligator Filmed Strutting Around Florida Swamp

A three-legged alligator has been filmed strutting around a Florida swamp.

The footage was captured by a camera trap set by wildlife photographer Bobby Wummer, who posted it to Facebook. It shows the alligator walking while missing one of its front legs. The slow-moving alligator can be seen falling onto its belly with each step. The post can be seen here.

This alligator obviously had a fight with another alligator and lost its right front limb. I have seen this numerous times!But even with this...

The alligator is filmed walking around a Florida swamp

In a caption posted alongside the video on Instagram, Wummer said this alligator obviously had a fight with another and in doing so, lost its front limb.

Despite this, Wummer said the alligator appeared to be "managing just fine."

"I have seen this numerous times but even with this alligator, missing its right front limb he is vigilant to survive and will," Wummer said in the post. "The alligators with missing limbs that I have seen in the field and this is many, have all healed over and the gators were extremely fat and healthy, and have no problems getting around walking on land. They are truly the last of the dinosaurs and are tough creatures."

There are about 1.3 million American alligators in Florida. On average, they grow to around eight feet in length, however some can reach up to 14 feet. They weigh more than 1,000 pounds.

Alligators can become aggressive towards one another during the breeding season and have been known to fight to see who gets to court a female. An alligator may also fight another if it feels its territory is threatened. Because of this, it is not uncommon for alligators to lose limbs, and parts of their tail, especially when they live among a thriving population of other reptiles.

American alligators have a strong immune system. In most cases, the wound from a severed limb will heal over. In 2020, it was discovered that sometimes, young alligators are even able to regrow parts of their tail after it is severed.

Tripod alligator
A picture shows a three-legged alligator. There have been several spotted in other areas of the U.S. Chris Graythen/Getty Images

In the comments to Wummer's Facebook post, many noted how "amazing" animals are to recover after losing a limb.

One commentator, Sydney Bowman, said she had once seen an alligator that was missing all its limbs, and couldn't swim as a result.

Another, Charles Patterson, said this was why the species have been here for "millions of years, driver determination." The same commentator suspected the alligator got attacked by a dominant male growing up.

David Smith said he suspected the alligator would be more aggressive now.

There are other well-known three-legged alligators in the state. The Lexington Herald Leader said one, affectionately named as 'Stumpy,' has been spotted at a Reserve in Polk County. The alligator is missing one back foot and part of its tail.