MURRELLS INLET, S.C. (WPDE) — A Murrells Inlet, S.C. resident caught an eyebrow-raising moment on camera: a massive alligator in the wild.
In the videos posted by Taylor Soper, you can see the alligator eating another, smaller alligator.
The videos posted Oct. 1, quickly grabbed social media attention. It was shared hundreds of times on Facebook and retweeted more than 10,000 times on Twitter.
It also has nearly 5 million views and 47,000 likes on Twitter.
Soper said it happened in his parents' backyard in Horry County. He said in his Twitter post, "The snack is a 6ft gator #lowcountrylivin."
'Snake Chaser' Russell Cavender said it's common for gators to eat other gators.
It's Mother Nature at its finest," said Cavender. "Nobody realizes how big these alligators around here get and what they eat. They eat just about anything. They eat deer, they eat other alligators. They've even been known to eat parts of tires, license plates, frisbees.
Still, the video has users shocked that alligators would eat one of their own.
"They're definitely cannibalistic," said Cavender. "And that alligator was 13 feet plus so he had no problem eating a 6-footer."
Cavender said he judges the size of alligators by their heads, length and width.
I've captured alligators enough to know that one is huge. Not just big, but huge! That gator has probably been 70, 80 plus years on this planet. Probably the alpha male in that area and usually alligators that big don't have smaller gators around because those smaller alligators know that they're food," said Cavender. "The more they eat the faster they grow. But once they get to certain length, they get wider instead of longer. So width grows, that alligator has been around for a while. He is every bit of 13 feet, 7, 8, 900 pounds.
Cavender said he's a fan of the reptiles and doesn't want any of them killed. He will relocate them if he's called.
He warned people to stay away from the water where alligators can live to be safe. He said once they're on land, they're very slow-moving creatures.
He added about the viral video, "Live with it! Welcome to South Carolina!"