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Angler Killed by Crocodile in Zimbabwe While Trying To Save Fishing Buddy

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May 10, 2012

Angler Killed by Crocodile in Zimbabwe While Trying To Save Fishing Buddy

By Chad Love

A Zimbabwean angler trying to rescue his fishing partner from a crocodile was attacked and killed by a second crocodile as he waded toward his friend.

From this story on foxnews.com:
A Zimbabwean man was killed while trying to rescue his friend from attacking crocodiles in northwest Zimbabwe, a fishing club said Wednesday. The National Anglers' Union said that Frank Trott, aged in his 70s, died after trying to rescue a friend paddling along the shoreline at Charara fishing camp. His friend survived but sustained wounds to his midsection and buttocks. The dead man was dragged away by a giant crocodile after going to assist his friend, said Mike Brennan, head of the fishing group. The friend, aged in his 40s and a fellow farmer with experience in the African wilderness, was treated for his wounds.

According to the story, the two anglers had spent the day fishing Lake Kariba, a 180-mile long man-made lake popular with anglers and tourists, but had returned to the club's fishing camp for dinner and drinks. That evening Trott's friend was wading along the shoreline when he was attacked by a crocodile. When Trott ran to his aid, a second crocodile resting in some nearby grass slid into the water and attacked Trott.

I gotta admit, that's scary. I'd still jump at the chance to fish Africa, in a heartbeat. But there's no way I'd be doing it in anything but a boat. A big, sturdy, stable, hopefully crocodile-resistant boat. How about you?

Comments (19)

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from Moose1980 wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

Not the best place to be wading. Sad story.

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from Redwidow wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

He must have been drunk. Why wade into any body of water, be it man made or natural in Africa? I wouldn't do that in Louisiana, Florida, Texas, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, etc., for fear of not being able to see alligators. And this man does it at night in Africa? Foolish. I'm sorry his heroic friend died. RIP. He's with Jesus.

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from Redwidow wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

oh...but yes, I would definitely fish in Africa...Just wouldn't bring my bathing suit!

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from redfishunter wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

Redwidow - No reason to not wade into waters in the south. There's not an unprovoked alligator attack on record in the state of Mississippi. The things are more scared of you than you are of them. Better keep an eye on small kids and pets though.

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from Happy Myles wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

The fishing is great in that part of Africa. Have fished on Lake Kariba and for Tiger fish on the Zambezi River above and below the dam, but as you say from a sturdy boat. Staying away from groups of hippos and heading for shore when the sun goes down. Lots of spectacular game viewing along the shores, but crocs are always nearby. That is also an area were you should take your malaria meds if you are out and about when the sun goes down.

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from IND_NRA wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

I have heard that the crocs over there are pretty aggressive by any standards, but they have probably learned that if there is a fishing camp nearby there is a chance there will be some free food laying around. Its sad to hear this man lost his life, but his friend will always remember that he saved him.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ontario Honker ... wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

Another casualty of drinking and fishing I suspect. Who in their right mind would try something like that? Where was their guide? Very sad story.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from bassman06 wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

I hope he rests in peace. Red, I agree with you on Florida! I went with a guide today in the canals where my uncle lives and we spooked a 16 footer! it wasn't 5 yards away from yours truly. however, we did hook a redfish which matches my hat and a few more. However, we did stand back to back when we were on shore and watched out for each other on the water after that.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ontario Honker ... wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

Reminds me of fly fishing for big Alaska rainbows during the second sockeye run. The bears keep you on the run constantly and watch the backcasts! I remember one of my last afternoons fishing and being back to back with lines pulled in when a big old boar named Teddy strolled towards us not seven yards away. There was literally no place to go as six other bears were all around us in every direction. The guy with me was pretty nervous (for an Alaskan) and asked what we should do. I said "Nothing. Hold your water for a bit longer. As soon as the sow with cubs twenty yards behind us catches sight of him, she'll clear out." She did and we filled that window of opportunity very quickly. That boar weighed at least 800 lbs and was long as a locomotive. He was close enough to see his eyelashes. But I didn't see them. NEVER look straight on at a bear that's close. Turn your head and watch it out of the corner of your eye. If it bluff charges, stay facing the bear, keep your head turned, arms up, and back up. I can't speak from experience but I doubt any of the above would work for crocodiles. Hmmmmm. I wonder if someone couldn't develop a kind of bear spray that works on those things. Aha, I smell a business opportunity for some enterprising young individual. I'm sure the stuff would sell well ... whether or not it actually worked.

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from tom warner wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

The difference between crocodiles and alligators is interesting. As was said, alligators seldom if ever attack adult humans. Neither do American Crocodiles. But it's well known that African crocodiles are frequent man-eaters, and so are Salt Water crocs I have heard. I have always wondered if it has something to do their very ancient association with great numbers of human beings, where they have come to see humans as just another food item. Neither were crocs actively hunted in bygone days and the people were mostly unarmed, so the crocs had no fear. Alligators probably never associated with lots of humans very much. Could this lack of fear become genetic in Africa? After all, Africa is the birthplace of humanity, so the association would go back millions of years. Or is there some other basic difference in the animals? Anyone care to speculate on that?

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Happy Myles wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

Mr warner, here are a few thoughts, I am certainly no expert, so what I write may be a croc (last pun I promise)
Crocodiles have fabulous senses o, sight, smell, and hearing. They are gone in the blink of an eye when they want to. However, the large ones are very opportunistic feeders, if hungry they will feed on fish, beast, bird, or man. Sometimes it appears one is focusing on man, when actually that happens to be what is handy and does not appear to be dangerous at that time. African river crossings often provide sort of "food funnels", places where banks are broken down by animals crossing, or coming to water along shore so the retiles wait here for prey. These same places are natural spots for local people to come to fill water jars, wash clothes and themselves, and just hang out to socialize. Most of these folks do not have adequate weapons to defend themselves against crocodiles. Remember, African villagers are used to walking long ways for water, rarely do they live next to springs. Wells are important, but in short supply. The rivers and lakes are their important sources for water. Perhaps if alligators were present they to might be a problem.

.

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from tom warner wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

Happy Myles: Good comment, although it appears to me that extremely abundant American Alligators have many opportunities to grab humans if they wished, but they do not. I might also note that there are some very large crocodilians in South America, such as Orinoco crocs (big!)and Black Caymans, but they are not a danger to humans either. I've seen many. The Indians there do not fear them, spend countless hours in the water, and laugh if you suggest that they might be dangerous. It just strikes me that there is a huge difference in behavior between New World and Old World crocodilians. Your points are all well taken, but I don't think they explain this mystery. You're also on the money when it comes to their super senses. I have seen very clear backwaters off the rivers that during the day show no sign of Caymans, but once night falls, there are shining eyes everywhere you poke a light. Where they were hiding beats me!

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from Captjim wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

What a sad way to end a long life. It reminds me of a story I read about last year where 3 kayakers paddled 1000 miles down an African river. With only 100 miles left the middle kayaker was knocked off and eaten by a big croc. Must be a horrible way to die. You have about 30 seconds to think about how stupid you were before you die. You could't get me near an African river in a kayak or small boat.

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from bounty1 wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

And this can be one more reason a crocodile is on my African wish list ta add to my trophy room.

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from 4511-21 wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

If you ever see areas where they hunt crocs...they are super wary and probably substantially lower the risk of an attack. For example, on Tracks Across Africa they have to put on some intense stalks to get within range. However, this being a fishing camp/club I'll bet the hunting is not allowed. The crocs would get used to human presence and lose any fear they have. Although being in the water at night is soooooo stupid in Africa. Although the friend trying to save him was brave, what is he going to do when he gets to him? Maybe turn him on his back and rub his belly?

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from Del in KS wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

Looks like another nominee for the Darwin award.

If a gator or croc grabs you stick your arm in his gullet and let water run in his belly. I read about a fellow that got away from a croc by doing just that. Seems the croc has a skin flap in his throat that keeps water out and if you open it he gags and will spit you out. Might be hard to remember if you are scared out of your witts by a croc.

BTW several people have been attacked by gators in Florida. A teen was killed by a 10 footer in Lake Counties Dead river a few years ago. Many people water ski in the presence of gators. Having grown up there I would not go in the water.

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from tom warner wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

It's a miracle that more people in Florida have not been attacked by alligators since there are so many of them. The place is also so crowded with humanoids, it's a wonder that there is room for anything else. Lots of luck sticking your arm down the throat of a croc! They are huge, fast and incredibly powerful and you would have to be in just the right position after it grabbed you to accomplish such a thing. The jaws would be clamped on some part of your body, probably a leg, and somehow getting the jaws open to get an arm down there would be very unlikely. Especially while you are drowning.

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from hutter wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

Stupid! I've never been to Africa but I know not to go anywhere in the African night. The animals own the night!

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from jr9893 wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

HE should have known better than to get in the water.

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from Happy Myles wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

The fishing is great in that part of Africa. Have fished on Lake Kariba and for Tiger fish on the Zambezi River above and below the dam, but as you say from a sturdy boat. Staying away from groups of hippos and heading for shore when the sun goes down. Lots of spectacular game viewing along the shores, but crocs are always nearby. That is also an area were you should take your malaria meds if you are out and about when the sun goes down.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Moose1980 wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

Not the best place to be wading. Sad story.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Redwidow wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

He must have been drunk. Why wade into any body of water, be it man made or natural in Africa? I wouldn't do that in Louisiana, Florida, Texas, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, etc., for fear of not being able to see alligators. And this man does it at night in Africa? Foolish. I'm sorry his heroic friend died. RIP. He's with Jesus.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from IND_NRA wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

I have heard that the crocs over there are pretty aggressive by any standards, but they have probably learned that if there is a fishing camp nearby there is a chance there will be some free food laying around. Its sad to hear this man lost his life, but his friend will always remember that he saved him.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ontario Honker ... wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

Another casualty of drinking and fishing I suspect. Who in their right mind would try something like that? Where was their guide? Very sad story.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from tom warner wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

The difference between crocodiles and alligators is interesting. As was said, alligators seldom if ever attack adult humans. Neither do American Crocodiles. But it's well known that African crocodiles are frequent man-eaters, and so are Salt Water crocs I have heard. I have always wondered if it has something to do their very ancient association with great numbers of human beings, where they have come to see humans as just another food item. Neither were crocs actively hunted in bygone days and the people were mostly unarmed, so the crocs had no fear. Alligators probably never associated with lots of humans very much. Could this lack of fear become genetic in Africa? After all, Africa is the birthplace of humanity, so the association would go back millions of years. Or is there some other basic difference in the animals? Anyone care to speculate on that?

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Happy Myles wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

Mr warner, here are a few thoughts, I am certainly no expert, so what I write may be a croc (last pun I promise)
Crocodiles have fabulous senses o, sight, smell, and hearing. They are gone in the blink of an eye when they want to. However, the large ones are very opportunistic feeders, if hungry they will feed on fish, beast, bird, or man. Sometimes it appears one is focusing on man, when actually that happens to be what is handy and does not appear to be dangerous at that time. African river crossings often provide sort of "food funnels", places where banks are broken down by animals crossing, or coming to water along shore so the retiles wait here for prey. These same places are natural spots for local people to come to fill water jars, wash clothes and themselves, and just hang out to socialize. Most of these folks do not have adequate weapons to defend themselves against crocodiles. Remember, African villagers are used to walking long ways for water, rarely do they live next to springs. Wells are important, but in short supply. The rivers and lakes are their important sources for water. Perhaps if alligators were present they to might be a problem.

.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Redwidow wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

oh...but yes, I would definitely fish in Africa...Just wouldn't bring my bathing suit!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from redfishunter wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

Redwidow - No reason to not wade into waters in the south. There's not an unprovoked alligator attack on record in the state of Mississippi. The things are more scared of you than you are of them. Better keep an eye on small kids and pets though.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from bassman06 wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

I hope he rests in peace. Red, I agree with you on Florida! I went with a guide today in the canals where my uncle lives and we spooked a 16 footer! it wasn't 5 yards away from yours truly. however, we did hook a redfish which matches my hat and a few more. However, we did stand back to back when we were on shore and watched out for each other on the water after that.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ontario Honker ... wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

Reminds me of fly fishing for big Alaska rainbows during the second sockeye run. The bears keep you on the run constantly and watch the backcasts! I remember one of my last afternoons fishing and being back to back with lines pulled in when a big old boar named Teddy strolled towards us not seven yards away. There was literally no place to go as six other bears were all around us in every direction. The guy with me was pretty nervous (for an Alaskan) and asked what we should do. I said "Nothing. Hold your water for a bit longer. As soon as the sow with cubs twenty yards behind us catches sight of him, she'll clear out." She did and we filled that window of opportunity very quickly. That boar weighed at least 800 lbs and was long as a locomotive. He was close enough to see his eyelashes. But I didn't see them. NEVER look straight on at a bear that's close. Turn your head and watch it out of the corner of your eye. If it bluff charges, stay facing the bear, keep your head turned, arms up, and back up. I can't speak from experience but I doubt any of the above would work for crocodiles. Hmmmmm. I wonder if someone couldn't develop a kind of bear spray that works on those things. Aha, I smell a business opportunity for some enterprising young individual. I'm sure the stuff would sell well ... whether or not it actually worked.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from tom warner wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

Happy Myles: Good comment, although it appears to me that extremely abundant American Alligators have many opportunities to grab humans if they wished, but they do not. I might also note that there are some very large crocodilians in South America, such as Orinoco crocs (big!)and Black Caymans, but they are not a danger to humans either. I've seen many. The Indians there do not fear them, spend countless hours in the water, and laugh if you suggest that they might be dangerous. It just strikes me that there is a huge difference in behavior between New World and Old World crocodilians. Your points are all well taken, but I don't think they explain this mystery. You're also on the money when it comes to their super senses. I have seen very clear backwaters off the rivers that during the day show no sign of Caymans, but once night falls, there are shining eyes everywhere you poke a light. Where they were hiding beats me!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Captjim wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

What a sad way to end a long life. It reminds me of a story I read about last year where 3 kayakers paddled 1000 miles down an African river. With only 100 miles left the middle kayaker was knocked off and eaten by a big croc. Must be a horrible way to die. You have about 30 seconds to think about how stupid you were before you die. You could't get me near an African river in a kayak or small boat.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from bounty1 wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

And this can be one more reason a crocodile is on my African wish list ta add to my trophy room.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from 4511-21 wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

If you ever see areas where they hunt crocs...they are super wary and probably substantially lower the risk of an attack. For example, on Tracks Across Africa they have to put on some intense stalks to get within range. However, this being a fishing camp/club I'll bet the hunting is not allowed. The crocs would get used to human presence and lose any fear they have. Although being in the water at night is soooooo stupid in Africa. Although the friend trying to save him was brave, what is he going to do when he gets to him? Maybe turn him on his back and rub his belly?

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Del in KS wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

Looks like another nominee for the Darwin award.

If a gator or croc grabs you stick your arm in his gullet and let water run in his belly. I read about a fellow that got away from a croc by doing just that. Seems the croc has a skin flap in his throat that keeps water out and if you open it he gags and will spit you out. Might be hard to remember if you are scared out of your witts by a croc.

BTW several people have been attacked by gators in Florida. A teen was killed by a 10 footer in Lake Counties Dead river a few years ago. Many people water ski in the presence of gators. Having grown up there I would not go in the water.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from tom warner wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

It's a miracle that more people in Florida have not been attacked by alligators since there are so many of them. The place is also so crowded with humanoids, it's a wonder that there is room for anything else. Lots of luck sticking your arm down the throat of a croc! They are huge, fast and incredibly powerful and you would have to be in just the right position after it grabbed you to accomplish such a thing. The jaws would be clamped on some part of your body, probably a leg, and somehow getting the jaws open to get an arm down there would be very unlikely. Especially while you are drowning.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from hutter wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

Stupid! I've never been to Africa but I know not to go anywhere in the African night. The animals own the night!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from jr9893 wrote 1 year 48 weeks ago

HE should have known better than to get in the water.

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