A family in Alabama are celebrating after catching the largest alligator ever recorded in the state over the weekend.

The mammoth beast, which measured 15-feet long and weighed 1,011.5 pounds, was captured by five members of the Stokes family near Thomaston. It took the family, consisting of Mandy Stokes, husband John Stokes, brother-in-law Kevin Jenkins and his children Savannah, 16, and Parker, 14, ten hours to capture the monster.  The hunt started on Friday night and lasted well into Saturday morning. Mandy Stokes said her crew went through the full range of emotions as they first staked the animal,  before battling it, then killing it and finally struggling to take it back to shore.

‘He came up just as calm as he could,’ Mandy Stokes told ‘When I pulled the trigger this time, water just exploded on all of us.’

When they finally got the beast back to dry land, he was so big that he crushed the winch system normally used by Alabama Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries biologists.