Missing Australian’s body found inside crocodile

The remains of an Australian man who vanished while fishing with friends have been found inside a crocodile.

Kevin Darmody, 65, was last seen at Kennedy’s Bend – a well-known saltwater crocodile habitat in a remote part of northern Queensland – on Saturday.

After a two-day search of the area, police euthanised two large crocodiles and found human body parts.

Police said it was a “tragic ending” for Mr Darmody. A formal identification process will be carried out.

Mr Darmody was an experienced fisherman and a well-known member of the community in Cape York.

The two crocodiles, which measured 4.1m (13.4 ft.) and 2.8m in length, were shot dead on Monday about 1.5 km (0.9 miles) from where he was last seen.

Human remains were found inside only one of the reptiles, but wildlife officers believe both were involved in the incident.

The fishermen with Mr Darmody at the time did not see the attack, but reported hearing him yell, followed by a loud splash.

“I raced down… but there was no sign of him, just his thongs (flip-flops) on the bank and nothing else,” his friend, John Peiti, said.

Crocodiles are common in Australia’s tropical north, but attacks are rare.

A fisherman was killed by a crocodile in similar circumstances on Queensland’s Hinchinbrook Island in 2021, and there were also fatal attacks in the state’s far north in 2017 and 2016.

Since a ban on hunting in 1974, Queensland’s crocodile population has rebounded from a low of some 5,000 animals to around 30,000 today. A 2019 report suggested an average of 1.7 adult crocs living in each kilometre of river surveyed.

Under Queensland’s management programme, “problem crocodiles” are removed from areas where they threaten public safety and, in rare instances, euthanised.

Those numbers are dwarfed by Australia’s Northern Territory (NT), which is home to the world’s largest wild crocodile population of some 100,000 reptiles. -BBC

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