Teacher bags a big croc

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS -

ONE school teacher will be the cen­tre of “show and tell” when he re­turns to school on Mon­day and shows offs about a crocodile en­counter that al­most ended in tears.

While en­joy­ing the school hol­i­days Jamie Fin­ger, a Grade 6 pri­mary school teacher, loves noth­ing bet­ter than to go fish­ing off the old Mowbray Bridge about 15km from Port Dou­glas.

But last Wed­nes­day, he got the shock of his life when a 2m crocodile latched on to his line which was baited with a green ba­nana prawn from the su­per­mar­ket be­cause he thought they were tastier than bait prawns.

“I have seen a num­ber of crocs in the wild be­fore but this is the first time that I have ever caught one - it was such an adrenalin rush,” Mr Fin­ger said.

“I saw it just be­low the sur­face when I threw my line into the river and then bang it hit the bait and took it and it then started to move off and so I in­creased the drag on my line and when I did this it sur­faced and went into a death roll and then ’spat out’ the hook and sinker and the bait.”

Mr Fin­ger said he had also been at his favourite fish­ing hole the day be­fore and saw two crocs about the same size as the one he caught, but on Tues­day he was happy to bag some barra, black brim, sand bass and a tasty mud crab.

“On Tues­day when I net­ted my nice lit­tle haul of fish I threw most of them back be­cause my freezer is full of fish but I kept the mud crab be­cause I worked hard to land that be­cause it had grabbed the bait on the rod and so I had to wind it in very slowly so as not to make it let go and it didn’t,” he said.

As well as be­ing able to snap off a cou­ple of pic­tures of the croc he caught as “ev­i­dence” Mr Fin­ger also man­aged to take a video of the croc to prove he had caught it and that his day out was not just an­other fishy tale.

“Af­ter catch­ing the croc, get­ting pic­tures was my next pri­or­ity so that I had ev­i­dence to prove I had caught the croc and I man­aged to get a video of it be­fore it fi­nally swam off,” Mr Fin­ger said.

And will he be go­ing back any­time soon?

“I sure will, it’s a top fish­ing hole but I think I’ll keep fish­ing from the bridge as it will be a lot safer than fish­ing from the bank - you don’t know what is lurk­ing just be­neath the sur­face do you?” Mr Fin­ger said.

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