A three-metre saltwater crocodile took a bite out of a fisherman's bakkie on Monday night in Richards Bay.
It was a close call for a group of Richards Bay fishermen who stumbled upon a three-metre saltwater crocodile in the northern KwaZulu-Natal coastal town.
Zak Williams, an avid fisherman from the area, uploaded a video onto his YouTube channel documenting their Monday night encounter.
This was after the crocodile emerged from the shallow waters in an area known as the Cassurinas, situated behind the small craft harbour, and took a chunk out of his Ford bakkie — damaging one of his fog lights.
A 3 metre crocodile took a chomp out of a fisherman's bakkie in Richards Bay, northern KZN, on Monday night. The salt water croc was spotted in the area previously & eluded a trap set up by KZN Ezemvelo. No one was injured during the incident. Video: Supplied @TimesLIVE pic.twitter.com/B2EP9KFuJR— Orrin Singh (@orrin417) November 26, 2020
Speaking in the video, Williams said he did not condone their actions on the night as it could have turned bad very quickly.
“After we had a little fishing session, we took a drive from the spot we were at. We were going to try somewhere else because that storm was coming in strong.”
He said as they were driving to their next location, his friend suddenly spotted the large female reptile directly in their pathway.
“I immediately reversed from where we were — but I don't think I reversed far enough — and I just left the van there with my headlights shining on this crocodile, just so we could see it, keep some light on it, know where it was and call for some assistance.”
Williams contacted members of North Coast Anti-Poaching (NCAP).
It is understood that there was an alert out for the crocodile, as it had been spotted in Richards Bay on numerous occasions over the past month.
Williams said they were waiting for authorities to arrive, when the crocodile started to become uncomfortable, as they had their headlights shining on it the entire time.
“At one stage she eventually came out of the water and took a chomp at the fog lights. Thankfully the crocodile was not injured and the damage on the vehicle was very minor.
“It was an eventful evening.”
The crocodile eventually retreated back to the water.
Williams said it made him feel uneasy that they had been fishing just 200 metres away from where they initially spotted the reptile.
Only members of Ezemvelo KZN are authorised to capture and relocate animals. According to spokesperson Musa Mntambo, they had previously attempted to catch the croc.
“When we heard about it for the first time about a month ago, we went there and set a trap to lure it in, but the water was too low and we suspected that it had moved off from the area.”
He said Ezemvelo staff would investigate the incident and continue to look at ways of capturing the reptile.