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Crocodile Attack – just a bite away

About 40min into our journey from Cairns to Port Douglas, a sign attracted our attention. “Croc Feeding 11am & 3pm” (it was 10:45am and it was hard to resist the temptation). I had seen crocodile feeding before in Broome, but this was Tina’s first.
From the first steps inside Hartley’s Crocodile Adventures, we connected with it. This place looked very well maintained, in a natural environment. There is even a lovely restaurant.

 

The feeding is not like the ones I had seen before. This time we are closer; in fact, we are on a boat floating on the crocodiles’ lagoon!

We are standing next to the lagoon, waiting to be boarded. I cannot control my excitement. As the time clocks, my heart beats faster.

Crocodile Lagoon

On board, our cameras are ready. The safety introduction was delivered with a great humour. It was just entertaining and full of information (but not calming!). The more I learnt about these silent predators, the more I came to the term that I should keep away from them. (from this point forward I started taking the signs A LOT more seriously!).

Games you do not want to play with a crocodile!
- Hide and seek! – Who is a faster swimmer! – Who can hold their breath longer!

The list goes on! In summary, you have no chance of winning a fight with a salt water crocodile, do not try to be the crocodile Dundee!

Fresh Water Croc FeedingAt first, we did not really plan to spend much time at Hartley’s Crocodile Adventures, but the croc feeding totally changed our mind. This place has all different size crocodiles, salt water and fresh water.
Fresh water crocodiles are smaller and comparably safe (some say you can even swim with them as long as they are not aggravated). Also they bite and let go, unlike their hostile salt water cousins. A saltie bites on, grabs hold, spins and rips to take their victim apart.

An amazing thing about this place was that we could find a variety of Australian icons in one place; snakes, koalas, kangaroos and exotic cassowaries. What makes this place special is how closely you can interact with those animals.

We got to hold a tiny crocodile. Even at such very young age, their eyes are vicious! But their belly is soft (through their life! <3).

The snake show was interesting. Whilst everyone else where entertained, there was one person fearing for his life! (one of those moment that you do not envy someone else!). The young boy’s facial impression who forcedly “volunteered” (apparently by his parents!) to interact with venomous snake. I think this is how I would look like when I see death!

One word: INSANE!
Make sure you do not miss the Crocodile Attack Show!
The water was muddy and calm. It was just insane to imagine someone would keep himself in there with a salt water crocodile and tease the fearless creature. There was no way to see through the water and the croc could launch an attack at any moment! It was just insane!

I was carried away with the humour and the entertainment of the show however once a while the horror dragged me back to reality! I don’t think I can find such thing anywhere else in the world!

Crocodile Attack

 

It is hard to tell which part of my visit to Hartley’s Crocodile Adventures was the prime. But I can definitely tell cassowary feeding was the most unique one.

CassowaryCassowaries are solitary and aggressive; hence in here they are kept in separate sections. Behind the fence, these waking dinosaurs appeared to be very gentle and smart. It was a special experience since you don’t often get to feed an endangered specie!

We had a very unusual experience at the Cassowary Walk. At the instant that we arrived, we felt a very low frequency noise. This booming noise felt like the ground underneath was breaking and the sound was played through a big subwoofer! The strange thing was that I could feel the noise more through my body than my ears! To be honest, it scared me. Up to this date I had not felt anything like that.

Because very low frequencies propagate over vast distances with little attenuation, those frequencies are optimal for long-range communication (which is particularly handy in the rain forest).
Later on, in Daintree Rainforest, this noise woke me up a few times in the through the night. I could not hear it but I could feel the vibration through my lungs.

Australian Wildlife / Australische Wildtiere

Finally, we finished our visit with feeding koalas. Fluff level reached 100% !!!
I cannot get enough of petting these fluffy creatures! No matter if you are the most stone hearted person, I guarantee you will never resist the urge when you see these fluff monsters!

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16 Comments

  • Reply Rashmi & Chalukya

    Beautiful pictures. We love animals but would never dare to swim with the crocodiles, not sure if even would pose for pictures. The video looks scary. We will go with the Koala 😊

    May 24, 2016 at 10:15 pm
    • Reply Behzad

      Thanks for the compliment about pictures 🙂 Koala’s are indeed indulged in fluff! you can take a picture with a tiny crocodile which is quite an experience!

      June 5, 2016 at 2:57 pm
  • Reply Jen Morrow

    Wow! I have seen crocodiles on a swamp tour in Louisiana, but the feeding experience is wild! Those guys are huge, with very strong jaws!!

    May 24, 2016 at 11:53 pm
  • Reply Liana

    Wow; It’s scary! I’ve never been that closer to such animals and I’d never want to approach them! They’re huge! Great pics btw!

    May 27, 2016 at 6:13 pm
    • Reply Behzad

      Thanks Liana 🙂 yeah, at some point we risked getting close to the water edge in Daintree Forrest but I think that was a crazy move. I agree, I don’t want to be in the same place with a croc either!

      June 5, 2016 at 3:44 pm
  • Reply Tamz

    Wow. Sounds thrilling and scary. I’ve never been near to a croc. The only animal experience I’ve had was when I was chased out of a jungle by wild boars in Thailand.
    But this looks truly insane – feeding those crocs.
    Also, interesting piece on the Cassowaries. 🙂 🙂

    May 28, 2016 at 6:51 am
    • Reply Behzad

      Thanks, haha I can’t imagine being chased by wild boars in a jungle! 😀

      June 5, 2016 at 3:54 pm
  • Reply Jona Bering | Backpacking with a Book

    I haven’t seen a crocodile in real life! You two are brave! I wonder how I would react upon seeing them up close!

    May 28, 2016 at 9:00 am
  • Reply travelerettenyc

    This sounds so exciting! I can’t imagine getting that close to the crocodiles! I would love to get that close to koalas though. And the cassowary noises sound pretty exciting too! I’m sure I would enjoy the whole thing!

    May 28, 2016 at 2:31 pm
    • Reply Behzad

      Thanks for the comment, I hope you are lucky enough to hear cassowary’s noise! it is very unique

      June 5, 2016 at 3:38 pm
  • Reply Bernard Tan

    The crocodile show looks scary, but at least from the picture, i seen they have a big area to move around. I have seen crocodile in an enclosed area and they are stacked together and it is terrible and a breeding ground for virus.

    May 28, 2016 at 3:01 pm
    • Reply Behzad

      It is horrible that crocodiles are crammed in the way you described. I have been to a couple of crocodile farms in Australia and they all seem to have ample space (very close to natural habitat).

      June 5, 2016 at 3:29 pm
  • Reply Sarah @ Expat of the World

    I’m sure the crocodile guide knew what he was doing and all, but I had to stop the video half way- I don’t know, something didn’t sit well with me. I felt sad for the crocodile. Why can’t people just leave them be? It must have been an exhilarating show, though.

    May 29, 2016 at 4:05 pm
    • Reply Behzad

      I had a chat with the man in the show and his supervisor. The man performing the show is an ex-army, he is full of energy, very extrovert and almost no fear. He’s supervisor mentioned that he’s main job is to protect the show person’s life and pull him back when he pushes the boundary too far.
      This man was pumped on adrenaline for sure!

      It is very special that you see the other perspective of the show, the fact that the animals are in captivity. Many people ignore this.
      However, it does not really seem to disturb the nature of the crocodiles. Crocs spend most of their time in one spot in order to conserve energy and not eat much (they can live on just a portion of a chicken for a week). The “show” is part of their feeding routine and they use two crocodiles alternatively for Crocodile Attack Show.

      Another aspect of crocodile farms is that they are animal sanctuaries for those animals that stand no chance in wild. Crocodiles have a better life expectancy.

      June 5, 2016 at 3:26 pm
  • Reply Sanket D.

    Not getting anywhere near one of those nasty looking creatures. Thank you very much – even though your experience seems quite funny and interesting 😛

    May 30, 2016 at 4:48 am
    • Reply Behzad

      Thanks for reading through 🙂 . The full show is very interesting and full of humour. We did not want to spoil the show so we refrained from putting much videos.

      June 5, 2016 at 3:09 pm

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