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story.lead_photo.caption One alligator weighed 524 pounds and measured 11 feet 8 inches.

Three Arkansas men Friday killed an alligator that weighed more than 500 pounds.

The three hunters — Warren Parker, 31; John Manues, 30; and Martin Lee Walt, 21 — found the animal around 10 p.m. Friday in a cypress creek a few miles outside Dumas.

On land, hanging from a wire with its mouth taped shut, the gator weighed 524 pounds and measured 11 feet 8 inches. But in the water, it was difficult to tell.

Parker said he and his friends, all from Dumas, began the hunt after a farmer told them about his gator problem and gave them hunting tags.

Parker provided the boat, Manues managed the ropes, and Walt carried the harpoon.

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Photos by Martin Lee Walt

They had been trailing the alligator for about an hour when it it turned and swam toward them.

“[It was] showing us who's boss,” Parker said.

Walt fired, hitting his mark, and Manues began pulling the gator in.

Parker said the group only realized the alligator’s size when it was by the side of the boat and they found it would not fit inside. They had to use a pickup to drag it ashore.

The alligator now sits at Half-Moon Deer Processing in De Witt, where it will be made into boots and belts.

They plan to hang the mounted head, but Parker said the tail is the best part to eat. He prefers it fried, with ranch dressing on the side.

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  • DoubleBlind
    September 19, 2017 at 4:32 p.m.

    This is just heartbreaking. I can't believe this is even legal. I wish all 3 a-holes had been eaten alive. What disgusting human beings.

  • dumblikeme
    September 19, 2017 at 4:45 p.m.

    Next one yall come across, just catch it and don't kill it. Apparently DoubleBlind wants to relocate it to his back yard so it can play with his pets.

  • LR1955
    September 19, 2017 at 6:30 p.m.

    This is governed by AGFC rules as a legal hunting season, hince the tags mentioned. They are not an endangered species in AR & have been seen as far North as the Illinois Bayou feed into the AR River near Russellville.
    Warning, I wouldn't swim (or let my dog swim either) in the AR River or feeder streams/creeks/rivers south of Conway.

  • Delta2
    September 19, 2017 at 8:19 p.m.

    DoubleBlind, gators have proliferated in Southern and Eastern Arkansas, hence the hunting permits and rules, which these gentlemen were following. Or are you just against all hunting and fishing?

  • Iraqvet07
    September 19, 2017 at 8:32 p.m.

    Everything those young men did was legal. If anyone has a problem with any type of "legalized" hunting, you are living in the wrong State and Country.

  • Shoe
    September 20, 2017 at 9:48 a.m.

    I don't hunt anymore. Just lost the stomach for killing anything myself, but I still eat meat. These guys were right and legal on this hunt. In addition they are harvesting the gator for consumption and the gator was a problem for the farmer. This is just life in Arkansas. Now some rich a-hole killing an endangered animal on a safari, that gets my blood boiling.

  • Dontsufferfools
    September 20, 2017 at 10:29 a.m.

    The argument for safari hunts, Shoe, is that wealthy trophy hunters like Don Trump Jr. help pay for wildlife preserves in Africa and Asia.

  • Pipad
    September 20, 2017 at 10:33 a.m.

    Fried alligator really does taste like chicken.

  • FireEyes
    September 20, 2017 at 10:38 a.m.

    DoubleBlind - As others have so clearly said, the hunt was legal. How would you feel if that gator killed a child??? It was big enough to kill a large man.

    LR1955 is totally right about staying out of waterways south of Conway, but I'll add also on the White River at least as far north as Newport. Smaller gators have been found occasionally that far north.

  • Delta2
    September 20, 2017 at 11:38 a.m.

    Fried gator is good, and gator skin boots are serious stylin'.