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giftedviz.com August 18, 2018


Student poses for graduation photos with her 13-foot alligator 'best friend'

09 August 2018, 01:30 | Darnell Patrick

Gator grad: Aggie takes graduation photos with 14-foot alligator

Senior takes graduation photos with one of her ‘best friends’ — a giant Texas gator | The Wichita Eagle

A Texas A&M University student got up close and personal with an alligator for special graduation photos that have gone viral on social media. She recently posted the photos with the caption: "Not your typical graduation picture".

One of the photos shows Noland placing her class ring on the snout of a 13-foot, 8-inch gator named Big Tex.

Noland said Big Tex is used to her and he's gentle, too.

'It took him a few weeks for him to like me.

But for the skeptics out there, she says come on down to Gator Country!

Since posting the photos to social media, Noland has gotten feedback from some people who love it and others who think what she's doing is insane.

"I've been working with him to get to this point to be able to feed him by myself so it was intense", Noland wrote.

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"Tex is the one who let me into his pond".

Her photos of the unique encounter have now been shared more than 5,500 times on Facebook. To her surprise, the pictures went viral, garnering almost 5,000 shares over the course of just three days. Gator Country Adventure Park is the largest alligator adventure park/sanctuary in Southeast Texas, according to the website.

"In all reality we don't want to bring these animals back (to the centre), we want them to live in the bayous and canals out in the swampy areas", she said.

The senior has been interning at a Beaumont rescue centre which is home to about 450 alligators, crocodiles and other reptiles.

However, she is no stranger to petting reptiles, having picked up snakes from a young age.

"I would never do anything to risk my own life. I'm trained", she said. "I wouldn't be doing any of this stuff if I thought I was in danger".



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