3 Jun 2016

Search for crocodile that took Kiwi woman scaled back

8:10 pm on 3 June 2016

The search for a crocodile that attacked a New Zealand woman, who is presumed dead, in the Daintree National Park in far north Queensland has been scaled back.

Police have withdrawn their resources but environment officers will continue to monitor traps and look for the animal that took Cindy Waldron at Thornton Beach on Sunday.

Cindy Waldron

Cindy Waldron Photo: Facebook

Ms Waldron was attacked as she waded in waist-deep water with her friend Leeann Mitchell.

The body of Ms Waldron, who was on holiday from New South Wales, has yet to be found.

Queensland police said they were no longer searching for the body.

Officers from the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection (EHP) will maintain three floating traps and one gate trap that have been set at Cooper Creek, close to where Ms Waldron disappeared.

The stomach contents of a 2.5-metre crocodile caught in a trap on Thursday has been examined in Cairns but the results were inconclusive.

The crocodile was sedated and his stomach contents flushed out. It was not harmed.

Acting Inspector Ed Lukin said police would assist EHP if more crocodiles were caught in the traps.

"QPS are pulling out, we will certainly be in regular contact with EHP," he said.

"I'm working with some very experienced EHP staff, their knowledge is second to none.

"My role here really is to just stand back and let those guys do their job and we just provide support in examining those animals and if any remains are found we assist and take over from there."

Daintree National Park, where Cindy Waldron was taken by a crocodile.

Daintree National Park, where Cindy Waldron was taken by a crocodile. Photo: GOOGLE MAPS

Acting Inspector Lukin said the search had been upsetting for those involved.

"They're very, very difficult, demanding and protracted investigations and it certainly takes a toll on all of those involved," he said.

"Certainly it's not something, luckily, that is common to us."

He said if the crocodile remains in the area, it will be caught.

"It's my understanding that once a croc has been declared a 'croc of concern' it will be trapped, no matter how long it takes," Acting Inspector Lukin said.

"If it takes six months, that's what will happen."

In a statement, EHP said no decision about the future of any animal captured will be made until there has been consultation with the Queensland Police, coroner and family members.

-ABC

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