Posted by: Loren Coleman on April 30th, 2011
A young couple have become the first people ever to have had a recorded attack by a crocodile in Florida. They were attacked at 3:30 am on Thursday, April 28, 2011.
Mike Gregory, 23, and Leigha Poulson, 20, who miraculously escaped with minor injuries, were kayaking in the early morning in Florida Keys after a night out partying, when they were flipped into the water.
As they struggled to get back inside the kayak, they were both bitten on the leg by an American crocodile, with Poulson also suffering scratch marks to her side.
Officials in Florida, however, wondered aloud if it might have been an American alligator instead. Frank Mazzotti, a biologist at the University of Florida Research and Education Center, who is known as the “Croc Doc,” believes no other animal could have caused such damage, because the area where the couple were kayaking is inhabited almost exclusively by crocodiles.
In the keys, crocodiles usually stay in the brackish, salt water, while alligators typically roam further inland in the fresh water.
“That area is almost all crocodiles,” Mazzotti said. “On very rare occasions an alligator may stray into there. Nine out of 10 times it would be a croc in that area.”
Leigha Poulson, who along with Mike Gregory, may have been the victim of the first ever American crocodile attack (in historical times) after their kayak was flipped.
Mike Gregory shows off his wound, believed to have been caused by an American crocodile.
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading living cryptozoologist. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013. He returned as an infrequent contributor beginning Halloween week of 2015. Coleman is the founder in 2003, and current director of the International Cryptozoology Museum in Portland, Maine.