The Biggest Alligator on Record, by Weight and Length

By: Yara Simón  | 
Have you ever seen a thousand-pound (454-kg), 15-foot (4.5-meter) reptile lumbering toward you? Elizabeth W. Kearley / Getty Images

If you came across an alligator in your yard (a totally plausible scenario in a place like Florida), you might think it's the biggest alligator you ever saw. But if it's not pushing 1,000 pounds and 15 feet in length, then it's likely not breaking any records.

If you want to acquaint yourself with the biggest of these apex predators, stick around. Also, note that we're specifically talking giant alligators, not crocodiles — measuring the largest crocodiles ever is a whole different story.


Types of Alligators

There are currently two extant species of alligator: Chinese alligators and American alligators.

The Chinese alligator (Alligator sinensis) is significantly smaller than the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis). The Chinese alligator grows to be about 5 feet (1.5 meters) long and can weigh as much as 85 pounds, though it typically hovers at around 50 pounds.


Male American alligators can weigh 1,000 pounds (454 kilograms) and are typically about 11.2 feet (3.4 meters) long. The female alligators are on average 8.2 feet (2.6 meters). As a result, the largest alligators are American alligators.

Gator Country

Florida and Louisiana have the biggest alligator populations, with each having more than 1 million gators.


The Biggest Known Alligators by Length

Gator hunters captured many of these massive reptiles during hunting season. Hunters might take their catch to a wild game processing facility and either keep or sell the meat and hide. Here are a few of the biggest alligators by weight and length.

5. Big Tex

This huge alligator measures nearly 14 feet (4.2 meters). The star of a Texas A&M grad's senior photos, Big Tex is impressive in size.


4. Drew Baker Alligator

Drew Baker beat other gator hunters' records when he caught and killed a giant alligator in Arkansas. The gator measured 13 feet, 9 inches long (4.2 meters).

3. The Lane Stephens Alligator

At 14 feet (4.27 meters) long, this alligator was one of the most sizable on record. Alligator trapper Lane Stephens caught and killed the gator in Lake Talquin, Florida.

2. Robert Ammerman Alligator

During Florida's statewide alligator harvest in 2010, Robert Ammerman captured an alligator measuring 14 feet, 3.5 inches (4.36 meters). "That was the second luckiest day of my life; the first was when I married my wife, Janette," Ammerman said at the time.

1. Mandy Stokes Alligator

The largest alligator ever recorded might be the Stokes alligator. At 15 feet, 9 inches (4.8 meters), this broke records in Alabama.


The Biggest Known Alligators by Weight

5. Lane Stephens Alligator

Not only is this alligator one of the longest, it is also one of the heaviest at more than 800 pounds (362.9 kilograms).

4. The Apalachicola Giant

Corey Capps caught this gator, which weighed 1,008 pounds (457.2 kilograms).


3. Mandy Stokes

Stokes' catch weighed 1,011.5 pounds (458.8 kilograms).

2. Drew Baker Alligator

This massive gator was more than 1,100 pounds (498.95 kilograms).

1. Mike Cottingham Alligator

At 1,380 pounds (625.96 kilograms), Mike Cottingham caught the heaviest gator in recorded history.