Florida woman recovering after alligator attack

Trapper captures 8-foot gator near Port St. John

PORT ST. JOHN, Fla. – A 26-year-old woman who suffered several bites from an 8-foot alligator while swimming in a Central Brevard pond on Saturday continues to recover, Florida Fish and Wildlife officials reported.

The bites to Nichole A. Tillman, of Melbourne, caused several injuries that were not life-threatening, News 6 partner Florida Today reported. The gator attacked her while she was wading in a pond 3 miles west of Port St. John Parkway.

A short time after the incident was reported, gator trapper Frank Robb, contracted by the FWC, removed the alligator suspected in the attack, officials said.

Chad Weber, a spokesman for FWC, said serious injuries caused by alligator bites are rare in Florida.

The Saturday incident was reported after 3 p.m. at Fay Lake Wilderness Park in Port St. John. Paramedics responded within minutes and quickly found Tillman. 

Brevard County Fire Rescue said Tillman had "significant" bite injuries. She was airlifted to a hospital.   

Residents and visitors should look for alligators in or near any body of water in Florida, Weber said. Alligators are more active during the spring and summer, he noted. 

Weber said anyone with concerns about alligators should call FWC's nuisance alligator hotline at 866-392-4286.