Tuesday, July 12, 2011

What a Croc! Giant 80-year-old reptile stuns tourists

Now that’s a holiday snap and a half! Giant crocodile gives tourists a shock as he leaps from water 

Last updated at 1:36 PM on 12th July 2011
This monster crocodile soared out of the water in northern Australia to grab a chunk of meat offered on a stick by a ranger.
Tourists on the boat, cruising along the Adelaide River near Darwin, reared back as the giant 80-year-old crocodile suddenly leaped up to grab the titbit.
Feeding the crocs is a daily tourist attraction but usually they're much smaller than this 18ft fellow, nicknamed Brutus by rangers who have been aware of his presence over the years.  
Snap! This monster crocodile sent tourists rearing back as it soared out of the water in Australia to grab a chunk of meat offered on a stick by a ranger
Snap! This monster crocodile sent tourists rearing back as it soared out of the water in Australia to grab a chunk of meat offered on a stick by a ranger
The picture was taken by Katrina Bridgeford, a photographer with the Northern Territory News, who was on the cruise with sons Jordan, 14, and Dylan, 11.


The largest crocodile on Earth, saltwater crocs - or 'salties' - are often said to be the animal most likely to eat a human.
The average male tends to be around 17 ft (five metres) in length and weighs 1,000 lbs (450 kg) but salties of up to 23 ft (seven metres) and weighing 2,200lbs (1,000 kilograms) are not uncommon.
Saltwater crocodile,
In the wild, they usually live to the age of 70 and populate the brackish and freshwater regions of eastern India, Southeast Asia, and northern Australia.
They are excellent swimmers and have often been spotted far out at sea.
Classic opportunistic predators, they lurk patiently beneath the surface near the water's edge, waiting for potential prey - including water buffalo, monkeys, wild boar, and even sharks - to stop for a sip of water.
With a thrash of their powerful tails, they grasp their victim and drag it into the water, holding it there until it drowns.
She recalled that when Dylan saw the massive creature rise out of the water he had only two words to utter - 'Holy crap!'
Brutus is missing his front leg following what is believed to have been a confrontation with a shark in the river's estuary - leaving many people to wonder just how big the shark was.
'When it came up out of the water there were a lot of "Oos" and "Ahs",' said Miss Bridgeford.
'I wasn't expecting anything like this. I couldn't believe how close it got to us.
'If you had put your hand out you would have been able to touch it - if you'd dared.'
Jumping crocodile cruises are a major tourist attraction in the Northern Territory, where the Crocodile Dundee movies, starring Paul Hogan, were shot.
Thousands of the monsters live in waterways around the Darwin region, resulting in the local government erecting signs in tourist areas warning people not to swim or wash their vehicles in the water.
They are also told not to camp near rivers because crocodiles roam up to a mile inland.
Several people have been killed by the reptiles over the years.
Three people were taken by crocodiles in northern Australia in 2009 alone, including an 11-year-old girl who was playing with friends in the Black Jungle Swamp near Darwin.

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