Message claims that attached photographs show a very large crocodile caught and killed at Borroloola in Australia’s Northern Territory after it annoyed a local fisherman by eating the propeller off his outboard.
The photographs are genuine and they do show a large crocodile caught at Borroloola in 2009. However, the reptile, which was considered a danger to local residents, was killed by NT Parks and Wildlife officers, not a local fisherman. The email description also exaggerates the length of the croc, which was estimated at around 5.5 meters.
Subject: Fw: Fishing NT Style…..
These photos were taken last week at Borroloola (Northen Territory).
It measured 6.325 meters and weighed in at 1855 kilos.
That’s a big reptile!
It started annoying one of the local Barramundi fisherman by eating the prop off his outboard.
He reckons it was circling the 5-metre tinny for 20 minutes before the decision to kill it was made by him and a very frightened deckhand.
These photographs, which depict a very large crocodile strapped onto the bed of a car trailer, circulate via email, blogs and social networks.
According to the description that comes with the images, the big croc was caught by a local barramundi fisherman at Borroloola, in the Northern Territory, Australia. The message claims that the fisherman – along with a “very frightened deckhand” – killed the beast after it ate the propeller off his outboard motor and continually circled his small boat.
The photographs are genuine and they do indeed depict a large crocodile caught and killed at Borroloola.
However, the description that travels with the photographs strays from the truth somewhat. The crocodile was killed, not by a local fisherman, but by Northern Territory Parks and Wildlife officers because it had been hanging around a local boat ramp for some time and was considered a potential threat to humans.
An August 13, 2009, report on Nine MSN explains:
A huge three-legged crocodile has been killed and paraded around a rural Northern Territory town, saddening local children who had nicknamed the beast “Mr Boombastic”.
The saltwater croc had been sighted near the town of Borroloola several times over the past few years, according to a staff member at the local school.
“The kids are all used to being around crocodiles,” said Noela Anderson, home liason officer for the Borroloola Community Education Centre.
“They used to always see it lying in the river and they would leave little pieces of food for it at the shore.”
Mr Boombastic, who was believed to be close to 70 years old, was deemed a “problem croc” by NT Parks and Wildlife after being spotted next to a boat ramp.
According to an August 13, 2009, Northern Territory News article, Parks and Wildlife officers first tried to trap the animal but, when that approached failed, used a harpoon.
The same photographs can be seen in an August 2009 Daily Telegraph article about the big croc’s unfortunate demise.
Although certainly very large, at an estimated 5.5 meters, “Mr Boombastic” was a little shorter than the 6.32 meters suggested in the email.
Borroloola is a small, isolated town located on the McArthur River, near the Gulf of Carpentaria at the top of the Australian continent. The area is known for its fishing – especially the highly sought after barramundi – and for being a habitat for saltwater crocodiles.