Tuesday 31 May 2016

Bob Katter calls for crocodile shooting safaris after suspected fatal attack

Northern Queensland MPs at loggerheads after Warren Entsch said the attack in the Daintree national park was the result of ‘human stupidity’

Australian Associated Press

Monday 30 May 201622.54 BSTLast modified on Tuesday 31 May 201601.42 BST

Independent MP Bob Katter says crocodile shooting safaris should be allowed in Queensland’s far north following a suspected fatal attack.

On Tuesday police were due to resume the search for the body of Cindy Waldron, 46, who was dragged under water after entering the water late at night at Thornton beach in the Daintree national park on Sunday.

Her friend Leeann Mitchell, 47, tried in vain to drag her mate to safety and later raised the alarm. The pair were celebrating Mitchell’s recovery from cancer andthe ABC is reporting they were were walking in knee depth water.

So far an extensive search has found no trace of Waldron.

Warren Entsch, federal MP for the electorate where the attack occurred, said it was entirely avoidable.

“You can’t legislate against human stupidity. If you go in swimming at 10 o’clock at night, you’re going to get consumed,” Entsch said on Monday.

But Katter, who holds the neighbouring electorate of Kennedy, said croc numbers had reached unprecedented levels and shooting safaris could reduce the risk to humans.

“The numbers of crocodiles have exploded. All of crocodiles’ predators have been removed,” he said in a statement. “We can put nature back in balance if we have shooting safaris.”

Katter criticised Entsch’s comments.

“I can’t believe that Warren Entsch is attacking the people over this. Defending crocodiles instead of people is stupid.”

Entsch said there was no way the women could have been unaware of the risks involved in taking a late-night dip in crocodile country.

“Let’s not start vendettas. It’s hard enough for some families to make a quid up there in the Daintree, showcasing crocs in their environment,” he said.

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