Dang it! Yes, I admit I jumped.
(Let me preface this by saying that normally the gators that we see from time to time in our little pond are 4ft or less, and like most gators, will quickly move away from humans.)
I was working in the back yard today, pulling weeds and trimming some bushes in the flower garden. There is an Oleander bush at the edge of the garden next to the yard grass, and I made my way over and was trimming it, and there was nothing in the grass behind it when I started on it. I was standing in the grass working on that side of the bush when I caught something dark out of the corner of my eye. I turned around and there was a gator laying there, about 6 feet long.
Okay, I don't know how high I jumped, but admit that I did. Not only laying there, but he did not move when I yelled at him. Not a good sign. I ran inside and grabbed the camera, and came back, took a few clicks, and yelled some more. He responded by opening his mouth. Again not a good sign. I picked up rocks and threw at him, and he still did not move, only after I got the hose and started squirting him did he finally move back to the water, and then he stayed right beside the shore. Only when I hit him in the head with another rock did he finally swim away. Hopefully he went back into the woods and back to the Alafia River where he came from.
Photos to follow.