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Department of Environment and Science

Queensland Government

Department of Environment and Science

Crocodile removed from Ferndale Lake, Port Douglas

3 March 2018

Ferndale Lake crocodile

Ferndale Lake crocodile

Department of Environment and Science (DES) Wildlife officers have removed a 2.7 metre estuarine crocodile from “Ferndale Lake” within Port Douglas.

DES targeted the animal for removal after it took a pet dog while it was walking off-leash beside the lake on 27 February 2018.

The crocodile is believed to be the same animal wildlife officers had targeted for removal since a reported sighting last month, when a crocodile was seen in the area.

A trap was installed in the area in January, however wildlife officers actively removed the crocodile from the lake on the night of 2 March 2018, following three nights of active patrols in the area.

The crocodile will ultimately be placed with a suitable crocodile farm or zoo.

DES wishes to thank Queensland Police and local council officers who provided invaluable assistance with the operation.

People are reminded to never interfere with crocodile traps or the activities of wildlife officers during operations such as crocodile removals. This behaviour poses a serious safety risk to the members of the public, DES staff and even the crocodile involved.

Pet owners are also reminded to keep their pets on a leash while walking their dogs in croc country.

DES reminds residents and visitors to north and far north Queensland that no matter how many crocodiles have been removed nor how shallow the water, no waterway in croc country can ever be considered to be free of crocodiles. In particular:

  • expect crocodiles in all far north Queensland waterways even if there is no warning sign
  • obey all warning signs—they are there to keep you safe
  • be aware crocs also swim in the ocean and be extra cautious around water at night
  • stay well away from croc traps—that includes fishing and boating
  • the smaller the vessel the greater the risk, so avoid using canoes and kayaks
  • stand back from the water’s edge when fishing and don’t wade in to retrieve a lure
  • camp at least 50 metres from the edge of the water 
  • never leave food, fish scraps or bait near water, camp site or boat ramp
  • never provoke, harass or feed crocs
  • always supervise children near the water and keep pets on a lead  
  • remember, you are responsible for your own safety in croc country
  • report all croc sightings to DES by calling 1300 130 372.

Further information on being Crocwise is available.

Please see these helpful safety videos for people who may be fishing or boating.

Last updated
3 March 2018