The mayor of Livingston is taking community protection into her own hands.
Livingston, Texas mayor Judy B. Cochran managed to kill a 12-foot, 580-pound alligator with just one shot Sunday night at her ranch in Goodrich, Texas.
It must run in the family: The hunt took place in the same pond where her 5-year-old grandson, Simon Hughes, took down a gator in 2009.
This particular reptile is a familiar one to the family, she explained.
“We think this is the gator that ate one of our miniature horses several years ago, as big as this gator was, he could’ve easily eaten it,”she said. “Typically the gators don’t bother us, but we’ve been looking for (this one).”
As an elected official, Cochran wants to make sure the public knows this was a safe, ethical hunt.
“There are a lot of requirements to kill a gator in Polk County,” she explained. “We’re one of 12 counties that has a hunting season for alligators, between Sept. 10 and 30. You have to have a permit and tags from a wildlife biologist, and you have to catch it on a hook first. We don’t just go to the ranch and hunt a gator.”
Handlers caught the gator on a hook with a seasoned raccoon Sunday night and alerted Cochran she could proceed with the kill.
Cochran already knows the fate of her catch: “Moye Taxidermy will be processing it, we’ll eat the meat, have the head mounted and have the ridgeback part of the tail in my office. We’ll have the hide tanned to make some boots out of it, you can only make boots from the belly.”
She’ll have plenty of material for several pairs of boots.
Cochran said it’s been a particularly exciting time for her and her family. She said she just became a great-grandmother, is a newly elected mayor and now claims a 12-foot gator as a hunting prize.
Cochran, whose grandchildren call her Nana, has a fair warning to share: “Don’t mess with Nana!”