AFTER 11 days of swimming and roaming around Phuket’s popular west coast beaches an elusive crocodile was finally caught at 3.30 a.m. today (July 29, 2018), the Thai-language daily Matichon reported.
The reptile turned out to be a 2.5-meter female and as no microchip was found embedded in its body, a wild one. It is as yet uncertain whether it is a saltwater or mixed-breed creature, and officials are also still trying to work out where it came from.
This is the second crocodile caught in this area in recent months, with a male one being trapped on September 1, 2017.
Safely tied up, the croc has now been sent to Phuket Coastal Fisheries Research and Development Center.
Mr Nikhom Suksawat, the head of the team that has been hunting the crocodile since July 19 after it was spotted a day earlier, said it took many days to catch it because of strong waves and wind that made it essential to plan well before proceeding.
It was finally caught at Layan Beach, which is part of Sirinat Marine National Park, by widening the trap and drawing the croc in by flashing lights at it. Once there the hunters shone lights into its eyes and threw a 3-layer net over it, after which they quickly tied its jaws.
Even yesterday the crocodile roamed up and down several west coast beaches including Nai Harn, Kata Noi, Karon, Tri Trang, Bang Tao and Layan
Top and below: The hunters tie up the rogue crocodile after trapping it at 3.30 a.m. this morning. Photos: Matichon