Mow­bray ‘in­fested’

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - FRONT PAGE - Shane Ni­chols

THE Mow­bray River, in the au­thor­i­ties’ spot­light over the death of Port Dou­glas aged care res­i­dent Anne Cameron, is home to between 10 and 15 croc­o­diles, ac­cord­ing to a lo­cal fish­er­man highly fa­mil­iar with the wa­ter­way.

Rangers cap­tured and killed a 4.3 me­tre croc­o­dile in the Mow­bray on Tuesday. Foren­sic ex­am­i­na­tion re­vealed hu­man re­mains which are be­lieved to be of the miss­ing woman, Mrs Cameron, who had gone for a walk from the Oz­care Fa­cil­ity in Craiglie the pre­vi­ous Tuesday af­ter­noon.

Last Thurs­day some of her per­sonal items, and hu­man flesh, were dis­cov­ered by searchers in a creek bed that runs to the sea a kilo­me­tre north of the Mow­bray.

Rangers who searched for the croc­o­dile in­volved in the death of Mrs Cameron spec­u­lated this week that the cul­prit was pos­si­bly a new­comer to the area.

The fish­er­man who spoke to the Gazette yes­ter­day said the river was “in­fested with croc­o­diles” and he be­lieved the EHP rangers, who may not visit the wa­ter­way very of­ten, were prob­a­bly sur­prised to re­alise the ex­tent of the pop­u­la­tion.

The fish­er­man drew a map of the lo­ca­tion and size of var­i­ous res­i­dent croc­o­diles.

As well as the three of­ten vis­i­ble from the Mow­bray Bridge, ly­ing on mud­flats on the western side of the bridge, there are sev­eral more in the up­per reaches of the river in­clud­ing one es­pe­cially large croc.

On the seaward side of the bridge, there is a large one, miss­ing part of a leg, which is usu­ally around the old bridge. Below that to the east are sev­eral more in­clud­ing a cou­ple of very large ones.

The fish­er­man showed video of a five me­tre croc in the lower part of the river.

A woman who works in Port Dou­glas has video, shot in the river, of a bat­tle-scarred croc that was “big­ger than our tin­nie”.

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