Alligator bites zoo handler as visitors jump into enclosure to rescue her

A member of the public saved the day when a demonstration at a wildlife park went horribly wrong.

Donnie Wiseman yelled "We've got trouble in here," as he realised an alligator at Scale and Tails reptile and bird centre had bitten one of the staff members and was preparing to drag her underwater.

He leaped into the alligator enclosure and the handler calmly told him how to get the reptile under control even as it had her entire arm gripped in its jaws.

Another audience member, Todd Christopher, then joined Donnie in pulling the stricken alligator wrangler to safety.

Todd's wife, Amy Christopher, then started providing first aid before emergency crews arrived on the scene.

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The alligator handler was taken to the hospital where Scales and Tails Utah says she "is doing well and is in recovery.”

Park management posted a message of thanks on their Facebook page yesterday, Sunday, August 15.

"We want to send a huge shoutout to Donnie Wiseman and Todd & Amy Christopher," they wrote.

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"We want to thank them for their heroism. Working with some of these animals has inherent risks that we as the staff accept.

"Yesterday, the sort of event that we hope never happens happened. One of our gator handlers got bitten by our large alligator and things took a bad turn.

"These gentleman could have stayed in the safety zone as most of us would, but instead jumped into the situation, of their own volition, and helped secure the alligator.

"Their help, combined with the training of our staff member, probably saved her life and her limbs,” they added.

"Mrs Christopher had a nursing background and started first aid prior to the EMT’s arrival and we thank her for that as well."

They reported that the alligator handler is in hospital and recovering well from her ordeal.

Donnie replied that he was pleased to hear the young woman was doing well, and added: "I’ll come visit again I loved that place."

Fearless Donnie signed off by saying that he would like to handle one of the park’s dangerous anacondas the next time he visited.

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