Gi­ant croc­o­dile takes head off 400kg cow

The Weekend Post - - News - ELIS­A­BETH CHAM­PION

A LARGE croc­o­dile re­moved from a Tully creek ripped the head off a 400kg cow that came down to the water­way for a drink.

The man­ager of a ru­ral prop­erty at Boar Creek, where 10 head of cat­tle have been taken by four croc­o­diles in the past year, has shed more light on the rav­en­ous rep­tiles wreak­ing havoc on his stock.

Depart­ment of En­vi­ron­ment and Her­itage Pro­tec­tion wildlife of­fi­cers re­moved a 4m salt­wa­ter croc­o­dile from Munro Plains sta­tion, about 15km west of Tully, on Mon­day af­ter it ex­hib­ited “con­cern­ing be­hav­iour”.

A de­part­men­tal spokesman said the large croc­o­dile was re­moved from the creek af­ter it had killed and eaten a calf and two dogs.

How­ever prop­erty man­ager Chris Davy, who has worked at the sta­tion for 18 years for owner John Porta, said the losses had been far greater than re­ported.

“To my knowl­edge, we’ve lost 10 head of cat­tle that I know of in that time, but we could have lost more. We have cat­tle that have gone miss­ing in that time,” he said.

“We’ve also lost five dogs, and two horses were badly bit­ten.

“One had to have 75 stitches in her head and an­other was mauled on her hindquar­ters. They both re­cov­ered, though.”

He said the cow that was killed re­cently by the cro­cood­ile was a new ad­di­tion to the sta­tion and had cost the own­ers about $800.

“The cow that they got, it was a fully grown, 400kg cow,” he said.

“She prob­a­bly came down to drink on the other side, or she fell in, be­cause she was only new here.

“We only pur­chased her the fort­night be­fore.

“Her head was bit­ten com­pletely off.”

The work­ing dogs they have lost were val­ued at about $3000.

“The dogs were the worst thing,” Mr Davy said.

“They are work­ing, they’re run­ning around, they’re hot, and they are al­ways try­ing to get a drink, but we have to stop them.

“If they jump in there, they’re dead. We keep our eye on them, but ev­ery time you make a mis­take, you lose a dog.”

The croc­o­dile was trapped on Mon­day morn­ing and it is ex­pected it will be taken to a croc­o­dile farm or zoo.

Pic­ture: ELIS­A­BETH CHAM­PION

DAN­GER LURKS: Chris Davy at the croc-in­fested la­goon where he has lost many cat­tle and dogs.

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