Scuba diver mauled to death by saltwater crocodile off coast of Australia

Posted: 12/12/2011 in all marine news

Richard Shears –

A search has begun for a large crocodile thought to have killed a scuba diver in northern Australia.

The savaged body of David Fordson has been recovered near Bushie islet, in the remote Cairncross Island Group three miles off the coast of Cape York, Queensland – an area notorious for saltwater crocodiles.

Police said the 49-year-old, the captain of a barge based in Cairns, had been ‘injured by a marine animal’.

They declined to say a crocodile was responsible, but local said the possibility of a saltwater croc being involved was high.

Mr Fordson had set out on a spear fishing trip with another member of the crew of the Torres Star barge because the vessel was running ahead of schedule and they had time on their hands.

Meyric Slimming, director of Silent World Shipping which owns the barge, described Mr Fordson as a ‘great friend and colleague’.

Counselling would be available to the company’s 15 staff, he added. Although estuarine – or saltwater – crocodiles live in marshy regions around river outlets and are known to swim for up to a mile or more out to sea searching for food.

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