Geoff Trutwein was 80km west of Wyndham, Western Australia, on his neighbour Nat Barnes’ boat when they hooked a juvenile blacktip shark on February 21. In incredible images captured by photographer Geoff, 62, Nat tried to reel the shark in further to the boat but the ravenous reptile refused to let go with its powerful jaws.
Eventually Nat decided he wasn’t going to win the battle and cut the line, allowing the crocodile to swim off with the fish to devour it on the riverbank.
Geoff, from Kununurra, WA, said: ‘We had been out fishing for a few hours and Nat caught a juvenile blacktip shark and while he was reeling it in this saltwater croc decided he wanted that meal.
‘He shot over really quickly and grabbed it. The crocs aren’t timid around people, they’re very happy to be around us.
‘I’ve been photographing wildlife for 30 years and I’ve seen the crocs around here a lot in my life but I’ve never had an interaction like this. It was shocking. It was just incredible to see something so powerful up close.
Geoff said the crocodile took the shark ‘straight back to the bank and wolfed it down’.
‘This one was only young but it was still about 2.5 metres in length. I got as close to the side of the boat as I was willing to get as I didn’t fancy losing my fingers.
‘They can look pretty placid when they’re lying on the mud flaps but once this one decided he was hungry there was no way he was letting it go.
‘They’re also lightning fast. Not only are they quick and powerful animals, they’re also really smart.
‘If you’re a regular visitor to the same spot, they’ll watch you closely and get closer and closer to you. One day they’ll be just under the water next to you and you’ll have no idea until they’re biting your leg.’