Dancing to the Crocodile Rock

Croc Jumping

Originally uploaded by howcro.

Crikey! Look at the size of that one!

I have been on two cruises involving crocodiles this week. On Wednesday we went to Kakadu National Park on a day trip (about 3 1/2 hours each way from Darwin). Kakadu is huge (19,804.00 km²) and home to tons of saltwater and freshwater crocodiles. I am not sure of the exact number but our tour guide said there is at least 85,000 in Northern Territory, and most likely over 100,000.

We went on a billabong cruise. There were lots of different types of bird, and with Kakadu being so big it felt like we were in a different country. The main excitement though was the crocs, we saw two of them. We got really close to the first one and it swam round our boat, probably eyeing us up for lunch. We didn’t disturb it, but it was clear it was letting us know who was boss, and we were trespassing on his patch! The second one was sneaking up on some ducks, but they scarpered before it had chance to attack. It was good to see them in their natural environment, and I’m sure there was a lot more of in there that didn’t make an appearance.

On Thursday we went on another day trip to Litchfield National Park, an another journey through croc-infested waters. We stopped at the Adelaide River and went on a crocodile jumping cruise (thankfully it involved them jumping out of the water, rather than me into it). The pictures showed a double-decker boat with windows on the bottom and an open area on the top. However that wasn’t in service and we just had a normal boat with open sides! And I sat at the side as well.

We soon found a croc, and the the tour guide tied a piece of meat to a piece of string on the end of a big stick, and dangled it over the edge. From the cruise the day before I noted that the crocs are dead silent when they move, and were moving very slowly. However the lure of food brought it to life, it was moving faster and tried to grab it by swimming past and doing an instant 180 turn. Then out of nowhere it jumped, most of its body out of the water and grabbed it. It was amazing to see them so close, there were only about a metre from our boat. We found four crocs on the hour-long cruise and they were all made to work for their food! Apparently their mind works like a serial killer, they sit and watch the habits of their prey, working out which is the weakest and when is the best time to attack. It was both exciting and a bit scary.

We also went swimming in the rock pools in Litchfield, which was a lot of fun and completely croc free.

That wrapped up our time in Darwin, and we have now reached Cairns where it is similar temperatures but slightly cooler and a bit less humid. Today we went on the Kuranda Scenic Railway and Skyrail through the rainforests, and on Monday we are going to the Barrier Reef. Tomorrow will used as it should be, a day of rest!

Video of croc jumping is below, and lots more pictures from the trip so far will follow shortly.


2 Responses to “Dancing to the Crocodile Rock”

  1. 1 Dad November 18, 2006 at 9:18 pm

    Rather you than me on that one!

  2. 2 James Wilson November 21, 2006 at 6:01 am

    sounds great, i would have pissed my self if it had jumped on the boat lol. when u heading down for the first test?

    btw bring me back a croc skinned, one on the wall wud look gr8!!

    BARMY ARMY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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