Fishing Trip Ends in Tragedy
An Indonesian teenager, fishing from a boat with friends was attacked and killed by a large Saltwater crocodile over the weekend. Despite frantic efforts from his companions the boy was dragged into the water by the large reptile and following an extensive search by locals and army personnel his body was recovered the next day.
Saltwater crocodiles, also known as Estuarine crocodiles (Crocodylus porosus) can be found over a vast area of the Pacific from Sri Lanka to the Fiji Islands, including northern Australia. These crocodiles have a deserved, fearsome reputation. Some specimens have been recorded as reaching lengths in excess of 7 metres and weighing over a tonne. Unfortunately, attacks from crocodiles are on the increase as crocodile numbers recover from hunting and poaching and people move into areas where crocodiles are abundant.
As a consequence of an increased number of crocodile attacks in northern Australia there have been calls for a re-introduction of culling to control crocodile numbers.
To read more about this: Calls for Crocodile Controls in the Northern Territories.
The teenage boy, Hanry Rumfable, was just fourteen. He and his friends were fishing from a boat just five hundred metres from their village on the Salafem River, in North Misol, Raja Ampat when suddenly the crocodile attacked.
According to survivors Steven and Melki, the attack was sudden and Hanry stood no chance.
Melki, just fifteen tried in vain to pull Hanry to safety by grabbing his friends T-shirt but it was to prove futile.
“I saw when he was being pulled by the crocodile off the boat and dragged into the water.”
Villagers accompanied by soldiers conducted a search for Hanry’s body shortly after the incident was reported, though it was not until the next day that they found his body tucked between mangrove trees. Melki said he was still in shock after witnessing the gory attack and had been too afraid to return home to tell Hanry’s parents what had happened to their only son. Our thoughts are with Hanry’s family, unfortunately attacks of this nature are an all too common occurrence in areas where Saltwater crocodile numbers are known to be high.