Can a human outsmart an alligator?
What do you do when you suddenly see a crocodile in front of you?
I turned around and found a crocodile just inches from my face. My reptile visitor, used to human encounters, was slow and not aggressive. But the situation could have changed in seconds and David wanted to warn me.
We have worked with Nile crocodiles in Botswana, Estuarine crocodiles in Australia and with American crocodiles in Cuba. I was thrilled that I turned around and saw this good-natured pointed crocodile in front of me. I would not have liked to have had such an encounter with a Nile or Saltwater crocodile. These species are far from good-natured and the encounter would probably have gone bad ... for me.
People have asked me if I was angry that David photographed my encounter with the crocodile when he would have tried better to "save" me. My answer is: I would have killed David if he hadn't taken the picture. I didn't feel threatened. I was a visitor to this animal's habitat and it felt compelled to see what all the hustle and bustle was about. Then it disappeared completely unimpressed.
That was the kind of encounter you hope for when you're out on a job. You are right in the moment. You are not afraid, but you are thrilled to see such an animal up close and voluntary. (Worth reading: When the crocodiles ruled)
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