Huge 14-foot crocodile caught at Australian tourist spot

Capture in ‘croc country’ largest for years, says outback ranger

Liam James
Monday 31 August 2020 12:49
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Wildlife rangers trapped the 14.5ft crocodile at a tourist spot in Australia's Northern Territory
Wildlife rangers trapped the 14.5ft crocodile at a tourist spot in Australia's Northern Territory
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Wildlife rangers have trapped an enormous saltwater crocodile at a tourist destination in Australia’s Northern Territory.

Measuring 14.5 feet from snout to tail and weighing 55 stone, the crocodile is the largest caught in the area in years, a wildlife ranger said.

The male was caught in the Flora River Nature Park, 75 miles southwest of the outback town of Katherine, said senior wildlife ranger John Burke.

A larger 15.5ft crocodile was trapped three years ago in the same wildlife management zone, but that one was caught in the Katherine River, which is closer to the sea, Mr Burke said, adding that he did not know of a bigger crocodile caught in the Flora River.

Flora River Nature Park boasts a rich variety of wildlife and is a popular fishing spot though visitors are warned against swimming in the river due to the presence of saltwater crocodiles.

Another large crocodile, this one measuring 11 feet, was captured upstream by the same wildlife rangers last week.

Mr Burke told the local Katherine Times the captures serve as a “serious reminder you are in croc country”.

Crocodile numbers have been increasing across Australia’s tropical north since federal law made them a protected species in the early 1970s.

“They certainly are increasing [in number], and that’s part of the reason we have the management zones – to reduce the numbers in high-visitation areas so there’s less chance of interaction between salties and people,” Mr Burke said, referring to saltwater crocodiles.

Additional reporting by Associated Press

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