A Florida man with a GoPro camera insists he wasn't trying to film a crocodile bite. But that's precisely what happened earlier this week when Chris Madden, a maintenance worker at Everglades Outpost Wildlife Rescue in Homestead, Fla., lowered his camera into the water.
"I wanted to get some up-close footage of the crocodile," Madden explained in an email. "But when he immediately lunged out of the water, I thought it would be cool to try and get some shots from the perspective of his lunch."
The resulting footage shows the American crocodile nearly consuming the 25-year-old's camera in three bites.
Madden says he had built PVC housing around the GoPro to protect both his camera and the crocodile ("PVC is soft enough that their teeth penetrate it enough to not cause injury," according to Madden). But when the croc grabbed it a third time, "a tooth went directly through the lens."
Madden says he cleared the idea for the video with Bob Freer, the owner of the facility.
"We discussed everything beforehand and he actually helped me come up with the idea for the PVC housing I put together," Madden wrote. "He's seen the footage, and is hoping just as I am that it will get some views and raise some awareness of the outpost."
In order to retrieve the footage from his mangled camera, Madden and his friend used an age-old technique.
"We had to splash around on the other end of the pond to distract him while my buddy scooped it off the bottom with a long net," Madden wrote.
- Chris Madden