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Alligator steals DSLR, kindly returns it eight months later

By dpreview staff on Aug 25, 2013 at 08:11 GMT

During a holiday party at the Everglades Alligator Farm last year, employee and budding wildlife photographer Mario Aldecoa was setting up his camera to capture the glowing eyes of the local residents. It wasn't long after he mounted his Canon DSLR to a tripod when, in a flash, one of the gators grabbed the whole thing as if it was lunch. Aldecoa waded into the swamp the next morning, just hoping to find his tripod, but everything was gone.

Eight months later, farm employees were feeding the alligators when they noticed something peculiar. Wrapped around the foot of one of the gators was Aldecoa's digital SLR.

Look what the alligator dragged in. Photo credit: Mario Aldecoa

The camera wasn't in the best of shape, as you can see above, but he was able to pry the memory card out of its compartment. Much to Aldecoa's surprise, the photos on the card had survived, including the one below, which he took right before everything was snatched out of his hands.

This was the last photo taken by Mario Aldecoa's Canon DSLR before it was snatched by am alligator.

It's safe to say that memory cards aren't designed to spend eight months in a Florida swamp, but somehow this one survived (Aldecoa hasn't disclosed the manufacturer). Aldecoa has since replaced his camera and is back taking alligator pictures again - with a lot more caution.

Via: Imaging Resource, Source: GrindTV

Comments

Total comments: 88
12
ManuelVilardeMacedo
By ManuelVilardeMacedo (8 months ago)

Don't you love a happy ending? «All is well when it ends well».
Now, the truth is - the gator only return the camera because he was a Nikon fanboy. He barfed it when he noticed it didn't taste like a Nikon.

18 upvotes
PhotoKhan
By PhotoKhan (8 months ago)

If that camera and lens (...and their correspondent sensor type+ FOV + max FL...) took that last photo I guess he should be very happy the gear was all the beast snatched away.

I have this feeling this won't be the last time we will be hearing from Mario in the news...

Comment edited 29 seconds after posting
1 upvote
Spectro
By Spectro (8 months ago)

""which he took right before everything was snatched out of his hands.""

He took the photo then the gator snatched it, written very clearly. The gator probably didn't like the taste and just spit it out. the strap then was stuck to the leg for a while, didn't mentioned any additional photos were taken by the gator.

1 upvote
PhotoKhan
By PhotoKhan (8 months ago)

Err...neither did I...

1 upvote
Lanski
By Lanski (8 months ago)

Think something was lost in translation there. The OP is saying he was very close to the gators and hence lucky to be alive. Anyway, I love the idea of the alligator taking a few snaps, and I love slipping puns in to my posts on DPR.

0 upvotes
Spectro
By Spectro (8 months ago)

ok, I guess I read it differently, my bad.

0 upvotes
rimcon
By rimcon (8 months ago)

Too bad looked like a nice rig

0 upvotes
Ronie-AAA
By Ronie-AAA (8 months ago)

Get out of town... if you don't want to disclose the manufacturer of the card than the whole thing is pointless, the picture is nothing to write home about.

1 upvote
Roland Karlsson
By Roland Karlsson (8 months ago)

SD cards are very tough. They are small and hard and well sealed. So, it was not a surprise that it survived. And ... its survival probably has nothing to do with brand. And ... you are not likely to have any use of the fact that it can survive 8 months in a swamp. So ... knowing the brand is only useless trivia.

Comment edited 30 seconds after posting
1 upvote
BIJ001
By BIJ001 (8 months ago)

Besides, the card's having survived could have to do with being closed and maybe shielded in the camera body.

2 upvotes
cknapp61
By cknapp61 (8 months ago)

Perhaps he is working out an endorsement deal before revealing the card's manufacturer.

1 upvote
Revenant
By Revenant (8 months ago)

Or perhaps he didn't want to be accused of already having made a deal with the manufacturer. There are always a lot of sceptics, who would think that this whole story was just an advertisement in disguise.

0 upvotes
Ferling
By Ferling (8 months ago)

Who cares what brand of card, or camera. The man had a story to share.

There are plenty of stories out there to justify how tough the Canon bodies are, including CFs. I have my own experiences with dropping them, getting soaked in the rain, etc. I've also accidentally washed a few CFs in the laundry and found them working fine. Stuff happens.

2 upvotes
Josh152
By Josh152 (8 months ago)

"Who cares what brand of card, or camera. The man had a story to share."

LOL are you new here? Pretty much EVERYBODY on this site cares. Even many of the ones who claim they don't.

0 upvotes
Pyrros
By Pyrros (8 months ago)

Wild animals seem to like Canon equipment, as is illustrated by the photo of a polar bear downloaded in my gallery,chewing a EF 70-200 mm f/2.8L IS USM lens.

Comment edited 5 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Ferling
By Ferling (8 months ago)

"LOL are you new here? Pretty much EVERYBODY on this site cares. Even many of the ones who claim they don't."

Josh, The story about the alligator is interesting in itself, regardless of the gear.

I have friends with Nikons and other brands of camera's/gear with their own stories to tell. I also have a 10 year old canon G5, and my kids still play with the 12 year old Nikon Coolpix. Both still working. Even my Canon 1Ds mk 1 is still working. Couple that with a 1970, all plastic, fully electronic T70 and T90 still shooting like new, and I'm not surprised.

0 upvotes
Total comments: 88
12