Crocodile is not the “bad guy”

DESPITE suffering serious injuries animal handler Trent Burton’s main fear is that “his mate” Johnny the croc has been depicted as the “bad guy” in the incident.

ANIMAL KINGDOM: Shoalhaven Zoo owner Nick Schilko and animal handler Trent Burton have respect for crocodiles.

ANIMAL KINGDOM: Shoalhaven Zoo owner Nick Schilko and animal handler Trent Burton have respect for crocodiles.

“I don’t believe he intentionally bit me,” he said.

“I got my hand in a stupid position and virtually gifted it too him.”

After wrestling his hand from the croc’s mouth Mr Burton quickly tried to calm the scared spectators.

“As soon as I stepped on land and I knew I was OK. I probably could have finished the show in some manner,” he said.

“I just wanted to reassure everyone that it was all allright. 

As soon as I got my hand bitten I knew it was my fault and when I saw all the traumatised faces in the crowd I knew how close I’d come. 

I felt really bad that people would think badly of Johnny.

“The aim of the show is to paint crocodiles how they really are and not how they are often portrayed in the media, as mindless killers.

“Sure they are dangerous animals and efficient hunters but the last thing I want is for Johnny to be seen in a negative light.

“He did not mean to get my hand but once I had given it to him, he knew what to do.

“Anyone who has seen the show in its entirety knows we try to show crocs are animals that think, they make decisions, recognise they are in the show and the keepers make the decisions.

“I don’t want people to think they are mindless, instinct driven creatures.”

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