Thursday, 6 April, 2006

16 year old Curtis Dodd, along with 3 friends, attempted to swim across the Katherine River when he was bitten twice by a 2 meter (6.5 foot) freshwater crocodile (Crocodylus johnstoni.) He managed to punch the crocodile off after sustaining minor injuries to his arms and back. Experts believe this was a case of “mistaken identity” as freshwater crocodiles rarely attack humans and the boy was much larger than the prey a crocodile of this size was capable of taking.

Location data

Latitude: -14.268000000000
Longitude: 132.604400000000

Incident details

Outcome: Non-Fatal
Victim Age: 16
Sex: Male
Activity Detail: Swimming Across River
Witnessed: Yes
Overall Quality of Report
Most important information is present and well-detailed
Date of Incident Date Precision
2006-04-06 Precise
Species Certainty
Australian Freshwater Crocodile Certain
Size (metres) Size Precision
2.0 Low certainty
Location scale Location accuracy
  • Precise Lat/Lon given
  • Waterbody (eg, river name)
  • District (common name for an area)
  • Province (or State)
  • Country

About the crocodilian

Australian Freshwater Crocodile

Australian freshwater crocodiles (locally referred to as "freshies") are a small-medium sized (maximum length over 3 m/10 ft, rarely over 2.5 m/8 ft) endemic to tropical northern Australia (Western Australia, Northern Territory and Queensland). This species is primarily found in freshwater habitat (billabongs, swamps, creeks, lakes) and may persist far up rivers into sandstone escarpment country in some areas; within some of these escarpment areas "pygmy" populations (reaching maximum lengths of only 1.7 m/5.6 ft) of this species have been found. The species can also occasionally be found further downstream along major rivers and even in more saline habitat. Both juvenile and adult "freshies" feed primarily upon invertebrates and small vertebrates, but larger adults may be capable of taking larger terrestrial prey items. While "freshies" present little (if any) mortal danger to humans, they can inflict a nasty bite if harassed. The species is currently threatened by the continued expansion of the invasive cane toad, which will fatally poison a "freshie" if ingested and has reduced some populations around the Northern Territory significantly. Recovery of C. porosus populations may also impact existing C. johnstoni populations.

Estimated Wild Population: 50,000-100,000

Conservation Status: Low Risk, Least Concern. 

About this record

Last Updated Contributor Incident Link Node Item GUID FKID
2013-10-22 23:00 100-3785 3785