Animal Diaries Archive
Herbie sweats bullets!
30 September 2005Brian (AKA 'Herbdog') is a second year croc handler here at Australia Zoo, and as part of his extensive training program he is constantly required to undergo training with various crocs and alligators.
On Tuesday it was time for him to step up to do a Charlie demonstration. Charlie is one of the most difficult crocs to work with here at the Zoo, and is a master of the 'tail-walk ramp'. Under the careful supervision of Toby, our most experienced croc keeper, Herbdog positioned himself on the tailwalk ramp and prepared to tail-walk Charlie. His little legs were shaking and the sweat was running down his brow; his throat was dry and his heart was thumping. Herbdog is usually a very confident young man, especially around the ladies and on the dance floor, but the thought of tail-walking a 400kg crocodile really had the big fella scared. He later said that he hadn't been so nervous since the grand final battle at the regional breakdance competition back in 1989, where he was crowned champion rapper in his age group. He took a few deep breaths and hung the food over the edge of the ramp, Charlie exploded out of the water and smashed the piece of meat with 3000 pounds of jaw pressure. Herbdog stepped back and counted his fingers - all three were still there, and his heavy breathing was drowned out by the huge applause from the crowd. He was very relieved to have completed his first Charlie feeding, and said he can't wait to do it all again.
Good on ya, Herbdog! No wonder the ladies love him!
Our Amazing Saltwater Crocodiles
The saltwater crocodile, also known as the estuarine or Indo-Pacific crocodile, is the largest of all living reptiles. This apex predator is formidable, opportu ...more
On display in the Crocoseum