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Father stranded in crocodile-infested waters overnight reveals how he managed to avoid being eaten alive after getting lost while out crab fishing

Daily Mail logo Daily Mail 4/12/2018 Samantha Lock

A man has survived a night in crocodile-infested waters by sleeping in a tree among mangroves after getting lost while out crab fishing near Cairns. 

Brian Duncan, 61, was feared to have been fatally attacked by a crocodile in Chinaman Creek when he didn't return home on Wednesday night, sparking a large scale air and ground search.

The 61-year-old finally waved a boat down just after midday on Thursday after two previous passers failed to see him in the mangroves. 

'I've apologised to everyone. Yeah I've made a big mess,' he said, speaking to the media after he was found.

a man wearing a suit and tie: Brian Duncan, 61, (pictured) survived a night in crocodile-infested waters by sleeping in a tree among mangroves after getting lost while out crab fishing near Cairns © Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited Brian Duncan, 61, (pictured) survived a night in crocodile-infested waters by sleeping in a tree among mangroves after getting lost while out crab fishing near Cairns

Brian Duncan, 61, (pictured) survived a night in crocodile-infested waters by sleeping in a tree among mangroves after getting lost while out crab fishing near Cairns

'The tide was coming in when I was walking back,' Mr Duncan told media after he had been found.

'And I'm not going to walk through water that deep - not when it's starting to get dark - so I went up a tree and spent the night.'

Mr Duncan explained he chose to climb the tree because it had a 'good vantage point' for the rescue helicopter to see him.

'Then just as I got in the canopy the helicopter flew over,' Mr Duncan said. 

The man's 30-year-old son, who is also a keen fisherman, went out this morning to the popular crabbing spot to search for his dad. 

a close up of a reptile: A 61-year-old man was feared to have been attacked by a crocodile after he failed to return home last night. 'There is a possibility that a crocodile could be involved,' Sergeant Dyett said © Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited A 61-year-old man was feared to have been attacked by a crocodile after he failed to return home last night. 'There is a possibility that a crocodile could be involved,' Sergeant Dyett said

A 61-year-old man was feared to have been attacked by a crocodile after he failed to return home last night. 'There is a possibility that a crocodile could be involved,' Sergeant Dyett said

a group of people wearing costumes: 'I've apologised to everyone. Yeah I've made a big mess,' he said, speaking to the media after he was found when he waved a boat down just after midday © Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited 'I've apologised to everyone. Yeah I've made a big mess,' he said, speaking to the media after he was found when he waved a boat down just after midday

'I've apologised to everyone. Yeah I've made a big mess,' he said, speaking to the media after he was found when he waved a boat down just after midday 

'He's rung his wife and said he was going to put some crab pots in before he went home,' Acting Senior Sergeant Gil Dyett told the media earlier today.

'He could have been bitten by a snake, he could have been injured,' Sergeant Dyett said.

'But obviously we've got to be real, and there is a possibility that a crocodile could be involved.'  

Despite the dangers, Mr Duncan was reunited with his family - uninjured and covered in mud. 

'He's got a few mozi bites on him but other than that he's fine,' Sergeant Gil Dyett said. 

a group of people standing next to a truck: A large scale air and ground search was launched due to fears Mr Duncan had been attacked by a crocodile in Chinaman Creek when he didn't return home last night © Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited A large scale air and ground search was launched due to fears Mr Duncan had been attacked by a crocodile in Chinaman Creek when he didn't return home last night

A large scale air and ground search was launched due to fears Mr Duncan had been attacked by a crocodile in Chinaman Creek when he didn't return home last night

a man that is standing in the sand: Despite the dangers, Mr Duncan was reunited with his family - uninjured and covered in mud. 'He's got a few mozi bites on him but other than that he's fine,' Sergeant Gil Dyett said © Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited Despite the dangers, Mr Duncan was reunited with his family - uninjured and covered in mud. 'He's got a few mozi bites on him but other than that he's fine,' Sergeant Gil Dyett said

Despite the dangers, Mr Duncan was reunited with his family - uninjured and covered in mud. 'He's got a few mozi bites on him but other than that he's fine,' Sergeant Gil Dyett said

a close up of a street: The man held a senior position with CSF Steel Fabricators (pictured) and his colleagues and family members searched for him when he failed to come home © Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited The man held a senior position with CSF Steel Fabricators (pictured) and his colleagues and family members searched for him when he failed to come home

The man held a senior position with CSF Steel Fabricators (pictured) and his colleagues and family members searched for him when he failed to come home 

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