Growing croc population sparks call for program

Published: September 20, 2016

Most grey nomads may be thinking about heading south pretty soon but they will be leaving behind them a red hot debate about the crocodile situation in the north.

Former Queensland premier, Campbell Newman, has just weighed in with a blistering attack on the state government there for failing to protect people from crocodiles … and he says more deaths are inevitable unless something more is done.

Two people have died in crocodile attacks in northern Australia this year, most recently in May when a 46-year-old woman was taken off Cape Tribulation.

There have also been a ­series of attacks on dogs and near-misses for people on beaches and around mangrove-lined rivers and creeks. Crocodiles have also been spotted near some popular swimming holes.

The Environment Department told the Australian newspaper that 40 crocodiles had been trapped and removed from the Cairns area alone this year, up from 19 last year. However, few were big enough to pose a serious threat, with just five longer than 2 metres.

Mr Newman blamed bureaucrats for blocking programs to shift crocodiles away from population centres in the north and to ­control colonies of fruit bats that were an increasing nuisance in many centres.

“This head-in-the-sand attitude can’t continue because ultimately we will see a child being taken or a fisherman out there enjoying a Sunday afternoon will be taken,” he told the Australian. “There are two Queenslands. There is inner-city Brisbane, where people say you shouldn’t do anything about the crocs or the bats, and there are people who have got to live with it in regional communities.”

Mr Newman supports the ­expansion of removal programs over the cull demanded by federal independent MP Bob Katter.

However, the state government has defended its actions to date and says it has committed $5.8 million over three years for crocodile management.

Experts say there are more than 200,000 saltwater crocodiles in northern Australia.

  • Should more be done about growing crocodile numbers in the north? Comment below.
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S Gray
5 years ago

Definitely only a matter of time before someone is taken in the Whitsundays with the number in the Proserpine river, they have migrated so far south, peoples’ welfare should come before crocodiles or bats.

Tony K
5 years ago

Totally agree with a culling and/or relocation program. Unfortunately, if we are waiting for this current Qld Government to make a decision, we will be bitterly disappointed.

Clarke Mc Dowell
5 years ago

Like the others I agree something needs to be done before there is more fatalities, Newman is a hypocrite as usual he was in power a mere eighteen months ago and did nothing about it.

5 years ago

WE lived in the Northern Territory in the 60’s and 70s. Culling was done over the years and the croc population was still around but in numbers that were manageable. The crocs use to be scared of humans then and stayed away from us. You could swim anywhere, jump out the car and swim in a river on a hot day to cool off. Darwin has be spoiled since the crocs have been protected. They have taken over all the swimming spots and its not safe to put your toes in the water. Its proven than after culling was stopped the croc population has exploded. It needs to be done again.

Mack Carson
5 years ago

Croc skins are worth big money O/S.
Get out a contract and it’ll pay for the cost of doing it.

Personally I reckon.
if you ignore the signs. and they are there.
You deserve what you get.

Same as sharks and snakes. They were there long before us. and will be there long after we gone.

What makes US so special.

They just part of the environment in tropics. accept.
and get on with your lives.

Very rare you see locals in that situation.
just dumb others.

we always put dogs in first in wet areas,
to make sure.

Trevor Earle
5 years ago

Having recently returned to Perth following some weeks travelling North QLD and NT and witnessing the stupidity of numerous travellers who consider any waterway or water hole to be available for access.
Totally ignoring warning signs that clearly advise that crocs are in evidence, should stay away from the Northern parts and stop complaining. On second thoughts perhaps if we lost a few more idiots the roads would be far less congested and give more room to the rest of us that have respect for the wildlife and the environment.


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