Residents urged to be ‘crocwise’ amid risks
A crocodile awareness campaign has been launched for residents and visitors to the Kimberley after an increase in the number of sightings across the region — and they are getting bigger.
The Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions is heading the safety drive, dubbed Be Crocwise, with local governments and traditional owners.
Projects include the installation of safety signs, hosting stalls at community events, school activities and using social media and advertising telling people what to do in crocodile risk areas
The campaign has been adopted from the Northern Territory and teaches people to be safe in and around Kimberley waters.
DBCA Parks and Wildlife Service Kimberley regional manager Daryl Moncrieff said it was important for people to be aware of the risks associated with proximity to crocodiles.
“It appears not only the number but also the size of the individual animals is increasing so it is a timely reminder about the presence of crocodiles in the Kimberley and to be crocwise,” Mr Moncrieff said.
“It is important to remind people of the dangers when people are out camping, fishing, boating and swimming in the Kimberley, which is a known crocodile habitat.
“One common misconception is that estuarine crocodiles only live in saltwater, when in fact they can be found in freshwater habitats far from the coast, such as rivers and billabongs.”
A male 2.87m saltwater crocodile was removed from the Port of Broome slipway after it was spotted and reported to the DBCA last Wednesday.
Two beaches and the slipway were closed as the reptile was in a risk area, which extends south of Willie Creek to Fall Point, near Crab Creek and including Cable Beach.
For further information on the campaign or to notify the department of a crocodile sighting, contact the Parks and Wildlife Service Broome office on 9195 5500 or Kununurra office on 9168 4200.
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