Crocodile Dundee of Highbury on African killer croc trail
A real-life Crocodile Dundee has flown to Africa to catch a killer croc that ate a child on Christmas Day.
Pete Prodromou, 28, also known as Safari Pete from Paul O’Grady’s Channel 4 talk show, went to Uganda on Monday to try and snare the giant reptile that killed a 15-year-old boy.
The teenager was swimming in a lake when the crocodile attacked. Another boy is missing and locals fear he may also have been taken.
Mr Prodromou, who lives in Highbury and is Islington born and bred, will attempt to curb the anger of the villagers and deal with the reptile compassionately.
He said: “I often get flown out to deal with problem crocodiles. In this case a child is eaten and another is missing – almost certainly dead. I will go over to try and find the bodies and catch the crocodile humanely.
“If the villagers feel a child has been eaten they are going to kill the croc and there is not a lot you can do – but I can make sure it isn’t cruel.
“Sometimes they poison a river just to make sure they get the beast.
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“It might take a week and we will use some crazy methods to lure it – a blow up doll covered with human scent.
“Generally there are a few crocs, but if one comes up to the doll aggressively, that’s the one we are after.
“It’s terrifying up close – not because of the croc but because of the other wildlife you might disturb – lions, buffalo and hippos.”
Mr Prodromou has been on the hunt for 12 years and got into the business after seeing crocodiles on a trip to Orlando when he was 15.
A keen conservationist, he now provides training free to the Ugandan government.
“I kind of grew up wanting to do it,” he said. “I used to go to Florida to catch them, but you can’t do that forever so I now teach people and have been giving talks in schools.
“I truly respect these amazing beasts and love getting close to them. The biggest I have caught was 18 foot. I have had a few narrow escapes, but luckily I haven’t been bitten yet.”