The alligator charged at a man on the La Chua Trail at Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park, near Gainesville. Getty Images

An angry alligator surprised a photographer by charging at him twice when he tried to take its photo in Florida.

A video has emerged of the incident, which happened on the La Chua Trail at Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park, near Gainesville, earlier in June.

It shows the alligator attacking the man on two occasions while he was trying to snap a picture of the reptile near wetlands in the state.

The photographer using a tripod which the gator managed to bite. He quickly threw the bag he was carrying to the ground and reversed away into the brush.

Not satisfied by the first attempt, the animal lurched forward for a second attempt when the photographer carried on taking pictures with what looked like a smart phone.

The man, who was among a group of hikers, made a lucky escape and the footage of his close shave has been shared on Facebook.

According to Ben Boukari Jr. who posted the video on 17 June, the "angry mama gator" was defending her babies: "Angry mama gator defends babies at La Chua Trail at Paynes Prairie in Gainesville.

"Guy is way too close! Everyone else around this video is on a boardwalk above the gator in a safe location. This gentleman was trying to get a little closer for pics."

Many people commenting under the video lambasted the photographer for straying to close.

One Facebook user, Shelley Renee' Warden, said: "Whomever he is, one thing is certain, he's totally ignorant and disrespectful of our wildlife and the privilege we're given to have these parks to enjoy.

"I hope he was caught and arrested/ given a very large fine."

Less than a week ago a Texas rancher was bitten on the hand by an alligator that strayed on to a farm.

The gator had broke into a cattle pen when an unnamed man caught it with a rope when he was bitten on his thumb.