How many of us would be willing to quit our day job to hang out with alligators instead? It may be safe to assume that none many of us would. However, that’s exactly what one native New York woman decided to do. Now she gets greeted with kisses from her favorite alligator every morning. You’ll be amazed at this young woman’s story and how she found her passion in caring for gators.
20. New Yorker
Gabby Scampone is a 22-year-old native New Yorker who has recently found her calling. The young woman has left her life in New York to live in Fort Lauderdale. So what exactly did she make such a big move for?
The young animal lover recently relocated to Fort Lauderdale to follow in her passion: rescuing and caring for alligators. Gabby absolutely loves gators and she goes out of her way to make sure that they have the best life conditions.
Gabby has long worried about the way alligators are deemed a threat in their own habitats. In order to combat this, the young woman has become a true gator savior. She also does volunteer work and you won’t believe what goes on there!
17. Volunteer Work
Gabby also does volunteer work at Everglades Holiday Park. There she puts on the craziest show for visitors who come to see the alligators. The audience is shocked when they see what this 22-year-old does…
16. Alligator Wrestling
One of the most amazing shows is her alligator wrestling ones. She puts on these shows on a daily basis and also uses the opportunity to educate the audience on alligators. She has even begun uploading photos and videos of her daily escapades.
15. Social Media
Gabby has begun uploading photos and videos of her alligator interactions on her Instagram account She posts daily photos of herself holding the gators and has attracted tons of followers. Everyone waits around to see what her next post will be!
14. Not So Scary
Many people are shocked at Gabby manages to get so close to the alligators without fearing for her life. However, Gabby doesn’t understand the sentiment at all. She claims that alligators are way less scary than you’d expect.
“A lot of people, 95 per cent, think that the alligators are going to chase them and eat them and kill you.They are not going to kill you and attack you for no reason. They don’t want anything to do with you, they are not going to chase you. They are not going to jump out of the water and try to eat you,” Scampone explained.
12. Left Alone
“They want to be left alone. People get bit if they are feeding the alligator, harassing the animal, but they are pretty chill, even in the wild. They don’t want anything to do with you,” Scampone went on explaining.
11. Rescue Missions
When Gabby isn’t putting on a show at the park, you can find her out rescuing alligators from people’s backyards, swimming pools, or local lakes. This makes the areas safer for both residents and the alligators.
10. Nuisance Alligators
“When we go and trap alligators, they are nuisance alligators. A nuisance alligator is any alligator that has been deemed as a threat to people or a threat to a livestock,” Gabby explained. Gabby went on to explain the situation in greater detail.
9. Saving Them
“So sometimes they are in swimming pools or on a golf course, a lot of the time people just don’t want them in their backyard, in their canal or pond. Because they are afraid of them, so we go and we save them,” Gabby said. Gabby is also passionate about this for another big reason as well…
8. Helping Out
“Most of the trappers won’t save the alligators, they will catch it and kill it because that is the way they get paid. Paul and I, we don’t kill the alligator, so we will go and we will catch them. It is sad removing them from the only place they know as home. But if we don’t do it, other trappers are going to.”
The alligators are extremely grateful to Gabby. In fact, they are so thankful that they often shower her with kisses which she gladly accepts. However, Gabby isn’t naive to the reality of dealing with alligators on a daily basis…
6. Risky Business
“Whenever you are working with an animal there are risks, especially with a large predator like this that has so many teeth,” she said. “You can lose your hand, you can lose fingers. He can rip your arm off, they are no joke.”
5. Social Life
Although Gabby loves her work it does cause her to miss out on a lot of other areas of life. Her emergency-based jobs means that she’s had to cancel on dates and nights out with her friends to make time for rescues. Still, she wouldn’t change anything…
4. Favorite Alligator
Gabby has spent so much time volunteering at the park that she has even made a best friend. Her favorite alligator is an elderly one named Swamp Thing. This poor guy has a permanently broken back leg and a cataract in one eye.
3. A Pet
“He is more of a pet; we don’t really use him for shows,” she said. “But he is just really sweet, he has his own routine. Every single morning when we clean the pit, he will go and let the water just push in his face. You know, just lay there and he will let me cuddle with him.”
2. Future Plans
“For the future I definitely plan on working with the animals, my entire life I am going to be surrounded by animals. I see myself trapping in the future, rescuing alligators and planning on keeping all ten of my fingers,” she joked.
1. Life Motto
“My life motto, as clichéd as it sounds, is just follow your dreams. Pursue your passion, don’t let anybody discourage you. Don’t let anybody stop you and do what you want to do and be happy in life,” she said. Gabby continues to upload photos onto her Instagram of her daily alligator adventures!