Dropping your phone is bad. Dropping your DSLR is worse. Dropping your DSLR by a bunch of alligators is even worser. And dropping your DSLR and having it stolen by an alligator is the worsetest. Just ask Mario Aldecoa. Luckily he got his gear back. After eight months.
Back in January, Aldecos was shooting a herd (gaggle? pack?) of alligators at the Everglades Alligator Farm with a tripod and $1,300 worth of camera. Everything was going fine until a gator got interested.
Aldecoa described the showdown to GrindTV this way:
Gators started getting closer and closer and one of them lunged out and grabbed the camera. I responded by grabbing the tripod real quick, but he jerked it out of my hands. Bye bye camera.
The next day, there was no trace. All that hardware down the drain.
Then, last Friday, a tourist at the farm noticed during feeding time that one of the alligators had a camera wrapped around its foot by the strap. Lo and behold, Aldecoa's long-lost device had returned. The camera was destroyed, but one of those eight-month old shots actually managed to survive.
Since the incident, Aldecoa got a new camera, and has kept up with shooting animals, but a little more carefully. He told GrindTV, "the main thing I learned is to not be overconfident with the animals that I’m dealing with."
Images by Mario Aldecoa with permission