Crocodile blamed for death of spearfisherman killed in north Queensland | Environment

Rangers have killed a four-metre crocodile blamed for a fatal attack on a spearfisherman in Queensland’s far north.

The crocodile was trapped and killed about 10pm on Tuesday, at the mouth of the Russell river close to where Warren Hughes, 35, disappeared on Saturday.

Hughes’s body was found on Monday after he went diving at Palmer Point, north of Innisfail.

Dr Matt Brien from Queensland’s Department of Environment and Heritage Protection said rangers were confident they had captured the right animal, which they believe charged a search boat on Sunday night.

“Based on its behaviour, size and location, we are confident the animal removed from the wildlife system was the target animal,” Brien said.

The department is still looking for the crocodile that mauled teenager Lee De Paauw, in the early hours of Sunday morning in Innisfail.

De Paauw suffered two broken bones and was lucky to escape with his life and left arm after jumping into the croc-infested Johnstone River to impress a British backpacker.

A trap was set on Monday but the three-metre crocodile believed to be involved hasn’t responded.

Brien said rangers would continue to carry out night-time patrols to try to find the acquatic reptile.

“Crocodiles are more active at night and easier to spot, so we hope through our increased trapping efforts and night patrols, we can locate and remove the target animal.”