A crocodile swallows a piece of chicken at the Koorana Crocodile Farm.
A crocodile swallows a piece of chicken at the Koorana Crocodile Farm. Chris Ison ROK211016ccroc5

People catching wild crocs for social media status

THERE has been reports that people are using baited lines to catch wild crocodiles in the Whitsunday region to bolster their social media status.

According to the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection (EHP), it's been in the last two months there has been three reports of crocs caught on baited lines.

Dr Miles said EHP was investigating such incidents in the Douglas, Hinchinbrook and Whitsunday shires.

"It's frankly unbelievable that members of the public would contemplate doing this, it shows a complete disregard for personal and public safety,” Dr Miles said.

He said they were doing it to bolster their social media status and it's caught the attention of the EHP.

"They achieved this objective, their Facebook posts leading us to investigate their actions,” Dr Miles said.

"Crocodiles are potentially lethal animals in the wild, particularly if they are being interfered with or tempted with food.

"The danger is real at all times, but as it's now mating season crocs can become very territorial and aggressive, particularly if they feel threatened.

"To attempt to attract them and to - heaven forbid - try to capture them is both illegal and seriously life-risking behaviour.

"Other members of the public can also be placed at greater risk if crocodiles begin to associate a particular place with food.

"This is just one reason why it's illegal to interfere with a crocodile without authorisation and why the potential penalties for doing so are so high.”

If a person takes a crocodile without authority they face a $27,427 fine.


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