Stories and Traveltips

ID #1206

Catching Crocodiles in the Olifants River, Phalaborwa, Lowveld, Limpopo Province.

Phalaborwa is a rough and ready frontier town on the western border of the Kruger National Park that is well known for its huge open-cast copper and phosphate mine. Its citizens are notorious for all manner of antics, one of which is to catch crocodiles in the Olifants River with their bare hands. Given the size of the monsters, this is no mean feat. One Fedmis employee was particularly well-known and proud of his reputation in this regard. 

One weekend he decided to take his family to an Aventura resort called Swadini on the Blyde River nearby. A small crocodile had found its way into the swimming pool at the resort. Personnel captured it and, being a nature reserve, placed it into a 44-gallon drum filled with water until Parks Board officials were able to release it elsewhere.

Our intrepid employee was taking his children for a walk when he happened to notice the drum and its contents. Keen to explain to his daughter his prowess in this regard, he picked her up and, holding her on his left arm, pointed at the crocodile with the other and said: “Kyk wat vang pappie in die Olifants Rivier” (Look what daddy catches in the Olifants River). As he did so the crocodile launched itself out of the water and latched itself onto the index finger with which he was pointing. Then, typical of crocodiles, it started spinning to break off what it had been able to grasp (crocodiles cannot chew, they simply break off and swallow the lumps). His index finger was wrenched from his hand in an instant.

What his family thought of his expertise thereafter is uncertain. But he wandered about the factory sans index finger looking sorry for himself for a while. His reputation as a great white crocodile hunter diminished greatly as a result of this episode. Alan McIver NFCatching

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Last update: 2014-05-14 13:59
Author: Alan McIver
Revision: 1.6

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