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Apr 10, 2014

Man-eating croc in Lord’s Bank is finally captured

A News Five team is just back from the headquarters of the Belize Coast Guard where three men have been detained following a shootout at sea. We’ll have that coming up, but first…there is some closure for the family of Carlos Michael Diaz tonight.  There is also relief for residents of the Lord’s Bank area because a man-eating crocodile has finally been captured.  Diaz was killed on Monday afternoon and since then a croc expert had been laying traps in the waterways behind Green Estates.  Today, a team located the reptile in a hole, they dug in as far as they could and then it took tremendous effort to pull out the twelve foot animal. Our cameras were on the scene when the croc was extracted. News Five’s Isani Cayetano reports.  

 

Isani Cayetano, Reporting

The grief-stricken family of forty-seven-year-old Carl Michael Diaz, who was mauled to death on Monday by a man-eating crocodile, has laid their loved one to rest in his hometown of Benque Viejo del Carmen.  In the wake of his horrific demise, Diaz’s wife, his eldest son and other relatives traveled to Lord’s Bank the day after, where they joined an ad hoc search party, comprised of about a dozen residents, in an effort to locate the killer croc.

 

Bert Ramos

Bert Ramos, Vice Chairman, Lord’s Bank Village [File: April 8th, 2014]

“This morning when ah get up ah call di Ladyville police, ah discuss it with di Ladyville police. Ah then call di Audubon Society which then directed me to the Forestry Department. The Forestry Department then said to me that they will be here by ten this morning. Well, it’s already half past ten and they haven’t reached as yet but I am still hoping that the Forestry Department comes in and then that’s the time when we’re going to make a move. We can’t make a move without the Forestry Department because I’m looking at the safety of the rest of guys who will be going in there with me. So, with the Forestry Department and their techniques then we’re going in there and see what we could do and try to capture this animal from out here.”

 

The Forestry Department would refer Ramos to Vincent Rose, an experienced crocodile hunter, who manages a wildlife sanctuary not too far away.  Since then they have been scouring the area behind Green Estates day and night trying to capture the elusive beast.  Despite near brushes, the team was unable to catch to the predator.

 

Richard Smith, Resident

“Every day we come out to try to locate it, to try to find wherever the hole is.  Whenever we find a hole we try to like strike it to see if it’s in there or not.”

 

The relentless pursuit of the riverine monster would eventually pay off.

 

Vince Rose, Crocodile Hunter

Vince Rose

“This morning, me and this guy came back here and he saw it.  So, we came back here and I actually attempted to put it down at that point but it wouldn’t give me a clear, a clear enough shot.  So we waited for a while and then the next group came and we knew where it’s hole was at that point and these guys decided that they would find his hole and dig him out.”

 

Shortly after two o’clock this afternoon, while setting a trap and a lure in a nearby creek, Rose was alerted by a member of the team that they had found the croc burrowed inside a hole.  Sure enough, bathed within the murky waters of the hollow was the ginormous reptile.

 

Richard Smith

“When we noticed that the croc is in the hole we just started to dig, dig, dig and then eventually we feel it snap on the shovel and then afterwards we noticed that yes it’s in there.  So we started to dig more, dig more and then we noticed that it’s mouth came out and that’s when we started to put the rope around it.”

 

After hours of searching and tireless digging, the party had literally struck pay dirt.  While fastening several pieces of rope around its powerful upper jaw was strenuous enough, attempting to pull it out of the hole proved to be a Herculean task which required share brawn.

 

Richard Smith

“It was really hard.  It was very strong.  One spell it pulled back, we pulled it again, it pulled back and we pulled it again.”

 

When the croc was eventually extracted, the men proceeded to secure it.  Despite writhing at first, Rose would manage to straddle the animal, fastening his front and hind legs in what is known locally as a ‘guana tie’, before taping its mouth shut.

 

Vince Rose

“I haven’t done any data on it yet.  We know it’s a Morelet’s [crocodile] and I was guessing nine to ten feet but he is missing two feet of his tail.  He may be a record for the Morelet’s species in Belize.  I’ll know more when I take the data.”

 

Isani Cayetano

“The capture of this giant Morelet’s crocodile in the area of Green Estates here in Lord’s Bank brings to an end the four-day long search for the killer of Carl Michael Diaz, who was killed in this particular area on Monday afternoon, where he was fishing for tilapia and other freshwater fish.”

 

To get the crocodile out of the thicket they would have to employ all their strengths, a concerted effort which saw them buckling under its hefty weight.

 

Bert Ramos [File: April 8th, 2014]

“If it wasn’t because of the kids who came yesterday to go and swim or maybe fishing or so maybe we wouldn’t have found that guy. That guy would have been taken away but, like I said, it’s an area, a residential area, people come in and come out. Kids come and bathe, older people come and bathe. So, at the time when these kids came and bathe and saw this croc hauling away this guy that could definitely tell you that from di time ih ker one, ih could ker more.”

 

His capture, ironically, by the same guys who spotted the croc attempting to drag and devour Diaz’s mangled body is, perhaps, little comfort to the bereaved family.  Residents of Green Estate however, are a bit at ease tonight knowing that at least one of these massive man-eaters has been caught and will be put down humanely. Reporting for News Five, I am Isani Cayetano.

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2 Responses for “Man-eating croc in Lord’s Bank is finally captured”

  1. Lord LOL says:

    This croc must be wishing it was human, it would have gotten away with killing in Belize….

  2. CEO says:

    These animals have been there since the days of Noah and the Ark. Humans are the ones that have entered into their space and now we call them a nuisance.

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