Giant crocodile spooks park employees

Jan. 16, 2009 at 6:47 PM
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DARWIN, Australia, Jan. 16 (UPI) -- An Australian park ranger and his girlfriend, a park surveillance officer, say a giant crocodile butted their dinghy in a marshy area in Kakadu Park.

The crocodile, which they estimated as close to 20 feet long, then stuck its head out of the water Tuesday and gave them a long look, Matt Dunley and Sarah Bentley told The Australian. They immediately abandoned their fishing trip.

The couple and Bentley's sister, Megan, were on a tributary of the Alligator River.

"I heard this big whack under the boat," Dunn said. "I looked down and saw this big croc head right next to the boat. It pulled its head back and went whack, whack, twice on the side of the boat. And it came up the side of the boat, with its mouth open and glared at us."

Rangers searched fruitlessly for the crocodile Wednesday.

"I know that croc," Dunn said. "He's been there since last year. Last year, as more people were fishing that creek, he got cheekier and cheekier, but this is the first time he's ever done that. .... It makes you realize you're not the top of the food chain."

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