Friday, 3 October 2008

Charley and his mates...

 
 
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This week my daughter sent me this e-mail. She lives in Queenland and not far from Cooktown.

Crocodiles have been sighted near where Arthur John Booker disappeared on the Endeavour River, just out of Cooktown, yesterday.

The crocodiles were spotted by the Environmental Protection Agency conducting a survey of the area the evening after the 62-year-old man's disappearance.

"We did identify a couple of crocodiles in the area. One immediately downstream from the boat ramp and a larger animal further downstream about 200 metres," says James Newman, EPA Regional Manager for Cape York and Savannah.

Mr Booker had been staying at the Endeavour River Escape. In the morning he went out to check crab pots he had on the banks of the river but did not return.

Mr Booker's wife, Doris as well as other campers began searching for the Vietnam veteran before calling the police around 10 o'clock.

It is currently nesting season for crocodiles.

"Nesting season starts around September and obviously, if there is a female around here, she will be very protective of her nest," says Mr Newman.

Inspector Ian Swan says items belonging to Mr Booker were found on the banks of the river and in the water.

"Late yesterday afternoon we did locate some property," he says. "At the bottom of the river when the tide went we located the male person's watch and a further 100 metres downstream we located a sandal which also has been positively identified as the missing person's."

A video camera was also found near one of Mr Booker's crab pots. The rope on the crab pot had been severed but police say this wasn't done by knife.

Today, a team of 13, including EPA Crocodile Biologist, Scott Sullivan, are investigating where Mr Booker disappeared. One State Emergency Service boat is being used. Work began at 8 am.

Locals had seen crocodiles in the river prior to Mr Booker's disappearance. One crocodile, in particular, is known to live in the river.

"Charlie does live in this waterway," Mr Newman says. "Charlie is a large crocodile. I think he's about 4.8 metres,"

Mr Newman says Charlie was 'tagged' last year by the EPA and is 'considered docile'. The team does have a crocodile trap with them but won't deploy it 'until necessary'.

The EPA gave a briefing before the search began today, urging SES volunteers and police officers to be 'croc-wise'.

"We will be looking in the water today and having a look at the bottom to see if they can't pull anything off the bottom and so we need to make sure that they are safe during the search," Mr Newman says. "So what we are doing is making sure someone is holding their belt at all times when they're leaning over the boat."


 
 
 
 
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click to enlarge.BTW This is not Charley! See also photos in sidebar.

Did you know that the Australian saltwater crocodiles are found in most estuaries of coastal, tropical Australia but can live quite successfully in freshwater streams and billabongs.Their diet consists of native animals and birds, but also cattle, horses, dogs and even men. They pull their prey into the water to drown, where they leave it for some time to decompose before eating.
Some time ago a party of some people were camping on the beach where they had a "barbie". They left some of the food on the beach and a croc was attracted to it. He went, however further and entered one of the tents, where he grabbed one of the men by his leg and tried to pull him out of the tent. Everybody woke up by the screams of the poor man. His mother came to help him, but the croc grabbed her, then another man came with his gun and killed the beast. It was an enormous creature, by the looks of it. I saw the photos!!
Well the croc on the photoslide is a different one of course, but no less ferocious.
A female croc lays about 40 eggs in a prepared mound of grass on a riverbank.

For more exciting Camera Critters, click on the logo in the sidebar. Thank you so much Misty Dawn!

36 comments:

Rose said...

That would be a horrible way to die!

Dirk said...

Waw, indrukwekkend beest. Daar blijf ik toch een eind van weg.

ratmammy said...

great photos!!!! thanks for visiting us, too!

April said...

These are fascinating pictures of the crocodile! The crocodile looks so much like a log in the first two photos. A very ferocious animal - they scare me even when I see them in the zoo.

Lapa37 said...

What an awesome creature they fascinate and scare me.Thanks for stopping by and giving me some advice about my lick happy cat.

Carletta said...

Your header photo is fantastic!
I wonder if he knew or suspected there were crocs there.
So sad.

Rambling Woods said...

At least they are not just going out and killing the crocs outright..Interesting info. Thank for visiting...

AppleDebbie said...

Frightening stories but wonderful photos of the crocodile.

Christy said...

That croc is big. Although I have seen larger ones on tv but not many. Thanks for stopping by my blog and for the kind comment. My boys however are not twins. I know dressing them alike doesn't help that much. They are actually 12 months and 11 days apart. So it feels like twins at times.

Cathy said...

Fascinating story and photos! I have to admit that whenever I see a crocodile, I feel as if I've stumbled into Jurassic Park.

Juliana RW said...

wow..that was a huge crocodile..

I hope you stop by at my CC post also in HERE. Thanks

Aileni said...

I think your post is quite exciting` enough. Good pictures.

bobbie said...

That is a nasty looking critter.

Z'riz said...

Oh! Nice shots! The crocs look....happy? hehehehe :)

Ramblings of a Villas Girl said...

I feel bad for the family.
The pictures are wonderful and I love your header.

The Holleys said...

Oh my gosh! So scary! wow! That is such an awesome shot of the crocodile.

Sandy Kessler said...

yipes I was told to steer clear of an alligator Thursday sandy

Sue said...

Great shots, but so scary!!! Yikes!!!

ChrisC and JonJ said...

That's scarey!!!!

babooshka said...

They are creatures that look left over from another age.Facinating writing and brilliant captures.

Pagan Sphinx said...

Wow. He looks pretty big. Shudder!

Really impressive photos! And thank you for coming by my blog!

johnsphotogallery said...

Wow, Amazing shots!

Ha en fin søndag :)

splummer said...

Hi!
Those are some great photos! Sorry to hear about the man missing. I wouldn't want to come face to snout with one of those!! Take Care!!

Sherrie

Larry said...

Awesome photos Wil! I think if I lived there I would be fairly cautious when going anywhere near those big boys!

John said...

På norsk heter den Moskusand eller Knoppand, jeg måtte bruke Wikipedia for å sjekke.

Old Lady Lincoln said...

Now that would be really, really scary.

fishing guy said...

Wil: You have some neat photos. A tragic story for sure. That is one wild beast with which I wouldn't mess . I'll leave that to Crocodile Dundee.

Lilli & Nevada said...

wow! that is huge, i would hate to run into one of these.

Smart Mouth Broad said...

We have alligators here in FL and hear this sort of story all too often as any incident is too often. You are always teaching me something. Thank you for sharing.

CrazyCath said...

Oh my goodness! They are gonna make sure the guys looking underwater are safe by holding onto his belt? It's straight out of Crocodile Dundee!

lisaschaos said...

Wow! They are a fascinating creature but I would not want to share waters with one. :)

Misty Dawn said...

Wow, that's scary! I'm not afraid of many things, but I AM very afraid of crocs and sharks!

I'm LOVIN the photo in your header, by the way.

Kelly said...

Great photos of the croc! What an interesting story but so sad!

Dina said...

Those croc critters give me the creeps!

Louis la Vache said...

By now, there is no doubt in "Louis's" mind that this is his former father-in-law!

Catherine said...

I was coming for Sky Watch, and watching at these crocs pictures I couldn't help but read the entire story of Arthur John Booker's end!

It amazed me that Australia remains a so wild in country!

Do they have evidences that he 's dead that way?