10ft Alligator Caught in Mississippi May Be Largest Ever, and a Century Old

Written by Colby Maxwell
Updated: April 8, 2023
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Alligators are among the largest animals in North America and have been around for millions of years. These semi-aquatic reptiles don’t generally bother humans, but the large ones can be incredibly scary to see in the wild. Recently, a few hunters caught a state-record gator that is almost double the size of an average human! Let’s discover the 10-foot alligator caught in Mississippi (it may be a century old!).

Meet the 10-foot alligator caught in Mississippi!

A 10-foot-2-inch alligator is the largest female ever caught in Mississippi.

©Svetlana Foote/Shutterstock.com

A 10-foot-2-inch alligator named Yellow 410 was recently caught by two brothers, Jim and Richie Denson, setting a new state record.

Yellow 410 (a name given during conservation research) was caught on the Pearl River on August 28th by two brothers. These two brothers, Jim and Richie Denson, had gone out for a hunt and ended up setting the new state record! During the struggle, the brothers ended up breaking their rod and a snare pole and nearly flipped their boat. Finally, they were able to pull the gator in and officially set the record.

Yellow isn’t the largest gator to have ever been caught, but she was the largest female gator to have ever been caught in the state of Mississippi.

“My brother (Richie Denson) and I were able to put a local legend in the boat,” Denson wrote.


Although the brothers set the record only a few days ago, it wasn’t actually the first time that Yellow had been caught! In fact, Yellow 410 got her name during a tagging program in 2011 during a research project. Incredibly, the Densons caught the gator only 100 yards from where she was originally tagged and named.

“We tagged this alligator on June 11, 2009, as part of a research project. At that time, the alligator also measured exactly 10 feet, 2 inches, and was captured within 100 yards of where the Densons killed the record alligator,” Flynt said.


What was the largest female alligator caught before Yellow 410?

Yellow 410 was an incredible animal that tied the previous world record and broke the state record! Before Yellow, a wild female alligator was caught and tagged in 1984, measuring the exact same. There have been larger wild male alligators caught, but there is a separate recording system for them.

As the record stands, the largest wild female alligator to have ever been caught was found in 2021 in Florida. This individual measured 10 feet and 6.75 inches, about 4.75 inches larger than Yellow.

Why did they kill Yellow 410?

10ft Alligator Caught in Mississippi May Be Largest Ever, and A Century Old

Yellow 410 was nearing a century old when she was caught.

©Peter Aronson/Shutterstock.com

As is standard for hunting practice, Yellow 410 was killed by the hunters who found her. Although it may seem sad, Mississippi allows for alligator hunting in order to help populations remain in check. Additionally, the revenue brought in from hunting funds a lot of conservation work around the state.

When Yellow was killed, researchers estimated that they may have been between 75 and 100 years old, making her one of the oldest gators in the world. Although Yellow was killed after being caught, she had lived a long life filled with plenty of fish before that.

How many alligators live in Mississippi?

10ft Alligator Caught in Mississippi May Be Largest Ever, and A Century Old

Mississippi is home to between 32,000 and 38,000 alligators.

©Steve Byland/Shutterstock.com

The current number of alligators in Mississippi is between 32,000-38,000 individuals. The hot, wet climate of Mississippi allows them to have one of the highest gator populations in the country. This number is managed by conservation research as well as hunting practices. Each year, hunting season opens in August and allows for two gators over 4 feet long to be taken, although only one can be over 7 feet.

Through these efforts, Mississippi has an extremely stable population of alligators.

What state has the most alligators?

Louisiana has the most alligators out of any state in the US. Current estimates show that Louisana has around 2 million individuals, with 1 million of them being totally wild. Since most of the state is swampland, it’s the perfect home for these scaly reptiles. Florida comes in a close second, with around 1.3 million alligators. Mississippi is currently listed as number 7 on the list of most alligator-infested states in the US.

What is the largest alligator to have ever been caught?

10ft Alligator Caught in Mississippi May Be Largest Ever, and A Century Old

The largest undocumented report of an alligator was measured at 19 feet 2 inches.

©Jim Schwabel/Shutterstock.com

The largest alligator to have ever been seen (although unofficially documented) was found by an environmentalist named Ned McIlhenny. The gator was 19 feet 2 inches long and was dying of exposure, although the story is simply a story.

Summary Of Largest Alligators Ever Found And/Or Seen

Alligator SizeState Found
19 Feet 2 inchesLouisiana
10 Feet 6.75 inchesFlorida
10 Feet 2 inchesMississippi

The photo featured at the top of this post is © GoodFocused/Shutterstock.com

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About the Author

Colby is a writer at A-Z Animals primarily covering outdoors, unique animal stories, and science news. Colby has been writing about science news and animals for five years and holds a bachelor's degree from SEU. A resident of NYC, you can find him camping, exploring, and telling everyone about what birds he saw at his local birdfeeder.

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