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Old 15-07-2015, 15:45   #1
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Why a Planing Dinghy

Sometimes you really need to get going...



This was a big croc. Recognisable at 3/4 of a mile away. I reckon close to 6 metres.
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Old 15-07-2015, 17:14   #2
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Re: Why a Planing Dinghy

Hmmm!

Yep, a biggie, well fed.

Where were you when you saw it? Do you know whether or not crocs are territorial?

Any ideas about croc that size's top speed through the water? on land?

Thanks for answering,

Ann
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Old 15-07-2015, 18:33   #3
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Re: Why a Planing Dinghy

Jesus, and I guess there are better things to worry about than bears.

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Old 15-07-2015, 19:06   #4
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Re: Why a Planing Dinghy

Family Van,

One time, I did a web search on saltwater crocodiles, and the Darwin (Australia) site informed me that they are able to stay submerged up to 2 hrs., waiting for a tasty tidbit to become available. They are said to lurk around places people land their dinghies, too, just looking for a meal. To be fair, most such places in Queensland where I have been have signs warning of the danger.

It's challenging. The crocs have been protected for quite a while now, and their range is expanding outside where their eggs can hatch. So they're traveling south in Qld., and have been reported in the Burnett River and also lingering rumors of being on Bribie Is., in Moreton Bay, which is well south in southeast Qld.

I'll add that Australian People tend to swim parallel to a beach, and only in clear water. As a Californian, I always used to swim perpendicular to shore, and in clear water, because I didn't like muddy water, not because I had the sense to realize it was dangerous.

Ann
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Old 15-07-2015, 19:23   #5
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Re: Why a Planing Dinghy

Ann, until my wife gets over her seasickness, I won't have to worry about crocs, even then we would need a much more capable boat. They really are a psychologically intimidating foe and I've never even seen one outside of a zoo.

I've watched documentaries on salt water crocs in Australia, their protected status and the impact they've had on swimming holes in (I think) the north.

Its interesting you bring this up, bears and even more so wolves/coyotes are becoming a greater risk around my area because they have lost their fear of humans. Maybe we haven't mastered nature as expertly as we think we have?

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Old 15-07-2015, 19:33   #6
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Re: Why a Planing Dinghy

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Ann, until my wife gets over her seasickness, I won't have to worry about crocs, even then we would need a much more capable boat. They really are a psychologically intimidating foe and I've never even seen one outside of a zoo.

I've watched documentaries on salt water crocs in Australia, their protected status and the impact they've had on swimming holes in (I think) the north.

Its interesting you bring this up, bears and even more so wolves/coyotes are becoming a greater risk around my area because they have lost their fear of humans. Maybe we haven't mastered nature as expertly as we think we have?

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Sagacious comments, FV. Good on ya!

A lone, unarmed human is no match for a pack of dogs, coyotes, or wolves, let alone mr Grizzly Bear. We forget our place in the food chain.

Ann
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Old 15-07-2015, 19:39   #7
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Re: Why a Planing Dinghy

I can't remember who it was, but somone on CF said they felt like a plate of Sushi when they used their tender up in the North of Australia. I feel this captured the essence of the situation quite well.

I saw footage of a saltie swimming up North, the camera panned back and you could see it was a good ten miles off-shore somewhere up near Cairns. A sobering moment for someone who enjoys diving in that part of the world.

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Old 15-07-2015, 19:56   #8
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Re: Why a Planing Dinghy

Anecdotal storey, my brother my dad and I were out hunting ground foul a few years back. I was armed with my 12 gauge, my brother with his bolt action .22 and my dad was unarmed because he was recovering from a stroke but his bushcraft is excellent, so always a good companion in the bush (plus he's good company).

We heard a noise from down in a ravine, so my brother and I went to investigate. My brother went straight down the ravine, but I chose to swing wide to approach from a different angle.

I got down to the bottom of the hill to see my brother face to face with a small bear. My brother was frozen in terror, only about 5 metres from the bear. He was frozen very still knowing his .22 was no match for even a small bear at that range. The bear was looking at him in a very calculating way, not the least bit scared.

The bear saw me to his left (about 10 metres). He looked at my brother, then looked back to me and casually turned and strolled off into the woods. Good thing the bear didn't know I only had a single round of number 7 birdshot loaded!

Very scary, we went home with no grouse or pheasant and drank a copious amount of wine.

Now when hunting even ground foul I carry a few rounds of buckshot in my pocket just in case.

Even my older brother who is staunchly anti hunting and anti gun carries a large bowie knife if he's in the woods with his kids.

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Old 15-07-2015, 20:07   #9
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Re: Why a Planing Dinghy

Don't get too worked up - crocs deserve respect, but be sensible and take basic precautions and you'll be fine. I've spent a bit of time in North Australia, both ashore and cruising.


Fresh water Crocs are generally timid, salt water ones are not, and large ones, esp males, are known to defend their territory.


Crocs are capable of only slow speeds ashore - walk briskly, don't run and trip! Don't get between them and the water - if caught out, give them room - they will return to the water given a chance, its where they feel safe. They can come out of the water 2/3rds of their body length in under a second - too fast to avoid- and that could be 3-4m or more! Use a bucket on a line to get water, do NOT lean over the transom/side or stand on the beach more than necessary!! When launching the dingy keep the dingy between you and the deeper water...


Swimming in some places is ill advised. Ask the locals. Crocs can learn routine - fish cleaning at the same time/place for example is not advised. If you have fish guts or bait in the dingy, they may try to find it to the detriment of the dingy and any crew. Don't hang limbs over the side - movement can attract unwanted attention.


Don't let the crocs put you off, or the crap you read online, about how they can run you down, hunt you etc etc. We used an inflatable, which we were assured would be eaten (it wasn't), and had a great time. It is likely you will not even see a croc in the wild unless you deliberately look for them. They are ambush hunters and hide if given an opportunity. However, they are often mistaken for "logs" when floating on the surface!! Take care, just another risk to be managed on your voyages!!
Matt
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Old 15-07-2015, 21:28   #10
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Re: Why a Planing Dinghy

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ann T. Cate View Post
Hmmm!

Yep, a biggie, well fed.

Where were you when you saw it? Do you know whether or not crocs are territorial?

Any ideas about croc that size's top speed through the water? on land?

Thanks for answering,

Ann
This was in Paluma ck, behind Hinchinbrook. Reportedly they're VERY territorial around breeding season, in the spring.

No idea how fast they can go in the water, hopefully our dinghy is faster!

On land? No idea, and no intention of finding out... actually, I believe they can run faster than a man can, but only over very short distances.

I'm sure you've heard the story - two guys are going into croc country, one of them is putting running shoes on. The other guy asks why -

"You can't out run a croc you know."

The guy with the shoes replies

"I don't need to outrun a croc, I just need to outrun you."
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Old 15-07-2015, 21:34   #11
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Re: Why a Planing Dinghy

This was his territory I guess. We saw him there a couple of times.


Some stills:




His head was about the size of a household fridge.
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Old 15-07-2015, 21:57   #12
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Re: Why a Planing Dinghy

Crikeys!

With that dentition, I wager he ain't a Vegan croc!

Jim
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Old 15-07-2015, 22:02   #13
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Re: Why a Planing Dinghy

Possibly a vegan once removed: ie. while not a vegan per se, he'll happily eat vegans...
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Old 15-07-2015, 23:30   #14
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Re: Why a Planing Dinghy

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Now, this is a Croc. An even larger one must have eaten one front leg!
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Old 15-07-2015, 23:49   #15
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Re: Why a Planing Dinghy

G'day 44
We are only about 160 NM and two months behind you.
It is too many years since we were up the inside of Hinchinbrook and memories of actual anchorages are vague so tell me can you anchor in Paluma creek?
Chris
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