Judy Cochran, a 73-year-old grandmother in Texas, is going viral after she shot and killed a 12-foot alligator who she believes ate her mini horse.
Cochran, who is the mayor of Livingston, Texas, killed the 580-pound gator on Sunday, September 16. She says she suspects it killed and ate her mini horse three years ago.
Cochran insists that the hunt was legal, as gator hunting season in Polk County — about 60 miles northeast of Houston — is from September 10 to September 30.
In addition, Cochran said that you must have a permit and a tag when hunting gator, and she had both when shooting the 580-pound reptilian.
via Houston Chronicle:
“We think this is the gator that ate one of our miniature horses several years ago, as big as this gator was, he could’ve easily eaten it,”she said. “Typically the gators don’t bother us, but we’ve been looking for (this one).”
As an elected official, Cochran wants to make sure the public knows this was a safe, ethical hunt.
“There are a lot of requirements to kill a gator in Polk County,” she explained. “We’re one of 12 counties that has a hunting season for alligators, between Sept. 10 and 30. You have to have a permit and tags from a wildlife biologist, and you have to catch it on a hook first. We don’t just go to the ranch and hunt a gator.”
Handlers caught the gator on a hook with a seasoned raccoon Sunday night and alerted Cochran she could proceed with the kill.
Cochran already knows the fate of her catch: “Moye Taxidermy will be processing it, we’ll eat the meat, have the head mounted and have the ridgeback part of the tail in my office. We’ll have the hide tanned to make some boots out of it, you can only make boots from the belly.”
Surprisingly (or unsurprisingly) enough, this is not the first time the Cochran family has been in the news for killing alligators. Back in 2009, Cochran’s five-year-old grandson earned himself an appearance on The Today Show after he shot and killed a 12 feet, 7 inches long alligator.