Cape Town - The Kruger National Park (KNP) confirmed that a crocodile killed a staff member’s son, Jacques van der Sandt aged 29, on Wednesday evening at the Skukuza Golf Course, situated adjacent to the Staff Village.
The following pictures of the dead animal were shared by SANParks, with Dr Freek Venter, KNP’s General Manager: Conservation Management saying it was "a special case in which the crocodile had to be shot since it still had Van der Sandt's body in its mouth when it was found".
According to the Regional Ranger, Don English, he got a call at around 22:00 that an individual had been grabbed by a crocodile at the Lake Panic Dam in the Golf Course area.
It is understood that a group of youngsters were hanging around after a game of golf when the incident happened.
Sapa reports Van der Sandt was attacked because he and a friend were playing a game to see who could retrieve the most golf balls from the dam.
"He was with a friend and the two men had a competition to see who could get the most golf balls out of the water at the golf club's number nine hole," spokesperson Warrant Officer Oubaas Coetzer said.
"In the competition they went under [water] three times and then the crocodile attacked. He was found at around 03:00 with bite marks on his arms and upper body. No body parts were torn off."
Coetzer said there was a golf competition earlier on Wednesday and afterwards a group of people went drinking. He said Van der Sandt had a few drinks but there was no one who said he was completely intoxicated.
“It is an unfortunate incident where a promising life was cut short; our condolences go out to the family and friends of the victim. Investigations are on-going to establish the exact circumstances as it was an unnatural death. It is now an SAPS matter and SANParks will conclude its own internal investigation”, said Dr Freek Venter, KNP’s General Manager: Conservation Management.
According to Dr Danny Govender, SANParks’ Disease Ecologist, “these animals are not in good condition as they have just come out of hibernation. The animal was doing what naturally comes to them; hunting for food and unfortunately a life was lost in the process”.