Alligator hunters hit the water to find big beasts

Photo provided by staff.
Thursday, August 29, 2013 - 10:32am

Alligator season is officially underway in the Eastern zone of Louisiana. Hunters are trying to bounce back after a hard season last year.

Eddie Lambert and Gregory Hedges search the waters of Belle River looking for a big green beast.

"The bigger the alligator the better the price," Hedges said.

The duo charters alligator hunting trips through their company Atchafalaya Alligator Hunts LLC, and so far, the season started off with a bang.

In their first two hours out on the water they caught seven gators.

Last year it was a different story.

"Well it took us about two weeks to fill 70 tags. Which at the beginning of the season right after the Hurricane we were only catching one alligator a day,” Hedges said.

Hurricane Isaac created lots of food to distract the alligators.

"The gators will start feeding on the dead fish, so they don't bite what's on the hooks. It took about a week or so for the dead fish to clear out and the gators start feeding again," said Eddie Lambert.

Hunters said this year Louisiana was blessed with great weather, and that means a lot of very hungry alligators.

"So far, it looks pretty good,” Lambert said. “The weather looks good for the next couple of days. You don't have any rain and of course no hurricanes so that’s the biggest thing."

Now the team will spend the next thirty days trying to fill tags before the cold kicks in and gators stop biting.

The team said they are hopeful for this season to hook big gators.

“Putting them in the boat that is the hardest part. Enjoying running the lines and shooting alligators, but putting a big alligator in a boat is difficult,” Hedges said.

Alligator season for the Western zone starts next Wednesday.

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