'Full Pain Immediately': Texas Woman Bitten By Alligator Gar At Lake

By Ginny Reese

July 12, 2022

Photo: Getty Images

One Texas woman was enjoying Independence Day when her time swimming in Lake Corpus Christi was cut short. My San Antonio reported that Joanne Garcia was bitten by an alligator gar while she was in shallow water.

Garcia told KRISTV6:

"It was full pain immediately, there was no little bite, it was just clamped on, and as I shook my foot, I think that's where more damage was done. I started kicking my foot, and [my sister-in-law] didn't know what it was, but she started kicking too. She saw the body come up out of the water and swim away, but he had gotten a hold of my foot, and tore it up pretty good."

According to Texas Parks and Wildlife Game Wardens, it is uncommon for people to be bitten by animals in the Coastal Bend area, especially an alligator gar.

Lerrin Johnson, Texas Parks and Wildlife Game Warden, said he hasn't heard of any cases like Garcia's. Johnson said, "But, talking with some other wardens who have worked in East Texas, where we have higher populations of gar, they have heard cases where people get nibbles on by alligator gar on their fingers or on their toes, where the gar are mistaken for little fish."

Garcia is okay after the bite. She says her wounds on her foot weren't severe, and she was treated with antibiotics.

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