UPDATE: AN EXPERIENCED crocodile handler may lose his hand after being bitten by a 4.5 metre crocodile in north Queensland.
Rob Bredl, or “the Barefoot Bushman”, is expected to lose part of his hand after the crocodile he was feeding tried to drag him into the water.
The 66-year-old suffered severe lacerations to his left hand and bite marks to his lower right leg.
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Staff at the Bredls Wild Farm claim Bredl’s hand was crushed in the attack and may require minor amputation.
He remains in a stable condition at the Mackay Base Hospital.
EARLIER @ 3.20PM 23 September: A MAN aged in his 60s has been airlifted to hospital after being attacked by a crocodile at a wildlife park in north Queensland.
It’s understood the incident occurred at Bredls Wild Farm, a family owned reptile park in Bloomsbury, south of Airlie Beach, just after midday.
The 66-year-old man, identified as Rob Bredl aka “The Barefoot Bushman”, was reportedly feeding a crocodile at the park when it latched onto his arm and tried dragging him into the water.
The shocking scenes played out in front of dozens of horrified tourists.
WATCH: File footage of The Barefoot Bushman feeding and riding a crocodile at the wildlife park last year
Paramedics said the man sustained a severe laceration to his left hand and multiple bite marks to his lower right leg.
Bystanders raced to the 66-year-old man’s aid and rendered first aid before paramedics arrived.
The man was then transported by ambulance to an awaiting rescue helicopter which was used to airlift him to Mackay Hospital.
He was transported in a serious condition.
Advanced Care Paramedic Heather Shields said the man was “extremely lucky” to have survived the ordeal.
“(The man) is extremely lucky,” she said. “(The crocodile) was a fully grown adult, about four-and-a-half metres long, so he is very lucky.”
“(The attack) happened on land and the crocodile was attempting to drag him into the water but he managed to get away before he was submerged at all.”
EARLIER:EMERGENCY services are racing to reports of a crocodile attack near Queensland’s Whitsunday’s Islands.
Early reports suggest a man was attacked at Bloomsbury, south of Airlie Beach, shortly after midday.
An ambulance spokesperson said the man was believed to be aged in his 60s. It’s understood he has sustained significant arm and leg injuries.
Paramedics attending a reported crocodile attack at #Bloomsbury. Reports of a male in his 60s with arm & leg injuries.
— Queensland Ambulance (@QldAmbulance) September 22, 2016