It appears that the image, which Richard described as a ‘photo of a lifetime’, was captured on an iPhone.
Richard documented the unusual behaviour at the Ocklawaha River while on a family trip to the Ocala National Forest in Florida on Sunday.
AP last night managed to track down Richard. Here is what he told us, via email:
What camera did you shoot this on?
An iPhone 6
Has this made you consider taking up wildlife photography?
I always take photos with my camera phone. You used to have to make an effort to carry a camera around. Now we’re all photographers, all the time.
So, was this just a case of being in the right place at the right time?
Absolutely. This was just a moment in time. The raccoon was only on the ’gator for a moment before it jumped off and ran away.
How long was the raccoon on the alligator? You must have reacted quickly if it was only a few seconds.
Two seconds. The camera was already out and [I] was going to take a picture of the alligator alone.
There has since been media speculation that the image may be a fake.
Richard Jones has yet to respond to follow-up questions posed by Amateur Photographer since the magazine received the answers above.
Data retrieved from the image file sent by Richard Jones to Amateur Photographer, by email from a Gmail account, appears to show that the photo was captured at ‘07.57’ on 14 June, using a shutter speed of 1/125sec and an aperture of f/2.2. The flash did not fire (see below).