'That's going to entail someone jumping in with Casper, a crocodile in a brand new environment, having no idea how he's going to react,' the teen says.
Robert Irwin narrowly escapes the jaws of a huge crocodile in terrifying new footage from the season finale of the U.S. TV show Crikey! It's the Irwins. The heart-stopping footage shows the 18-year-old son of late crocodile hunter Steve Irwin fleeing for his life from a 13 ft-long, 350-kilogram (approximately 772 pounds) crocodile named Casper. Sharing the gripping clip on social media, the young zookeeper wrote: "We've definitely saved the best for last, including one of the most intense croc feeds I've done! We prioritize natural behavior with our crocs. By getting in their enclosures with them, and letting them put on those huge strikes from the water's edge, they get to use all of their predatory instincts and they just love it!"
Watch the heart-stopping moment Robert Irwin is almost EATEN by a 4m #crocodile and is forced to flee for his life when the beast lunges at him - 15 years after his father Steve was killed while filming pic.twitter.com/DUi8eSgVPE— Hans Solo (@thandojo) February 7, 2022
"Plus we can educate everyone about their conservation. But safety for us is also crucial and you definitely have to know when to call it. And with such a powerful and quick croc like Casper, we had no choice but to bail," he added. In the preview, Robert explains that he has to test whether Casper was comfortable enough with his new enclosure to be featured in shows at the famous zoo in Queensland. "Today is my first encounter feeding Casper in his new enclosure behind the Crocoseum. A few weeks ago, we had one of the biggest and most challenging crocodile moves that we've had at Australia Zoo: swapping big, bad Bosco with our wildest crocodile, Casper," he says in the video.
"We had to move Bosco out of the Crocoseum because he was getting too comfortable in there. He was way too territorial. So we put him in this beautiful new space that he clearly loves," Robert explains. "Now, Casper is going to be the new star of the mid-day croc show. Before Casper makes his debut in the Crocoseum, we need to do a bit of a test. Just to make sure that he's settling in nicely to this new enclosure. If he's coming out of the water giving big strikes, that means he's going to be ready for the Crocoseum show."
"That's going to entail someone jumping in with Casper, a crocodile in a brand new environment, having no idea how he's going to react. And today, that person is me," the young man adds with a laugh. Robert then shares that the croc has displayed “wild behavior since [his late father Steve Irwin] first got Casper," admitting that the task ahead of him was "quite terrifying." Tense moments follow as the teenager bravely steps into the enclosure and approaches the water with bait ready.
Casper, the rare 'leucistic' saltie, suddenly leaps out of the water, snapping its jaw towards the bait. "Yeah, he's keen, jeez he's keen," Robert says of the croc’s speed and intensity before things quickly go downhill as Casper sets his sights on the teenager. Knowing when to call it quits, Robert runs across the exhibit in a heart-stopping moment while repeating: "Bail, bail, bail, bail, bail, bail!" According to News.com.au, Steve Irwin rescued Casper from the Kimberleys in Western Australia back in 2002. He also wrote an article about Casper for International Crocodile Rescue at the time.
"We had to come up with a name for the most spectacular-looking crocodile we'd ever seen," Irwin wrote. "It was easy - Casper; although he's still not even remotely friendly like his ghostly namesake. Casper is leucistic (lacks the melanin pigment) - it is actually more rare than albinism. Approximately one in 10 000 animals are leucistic, and unlike albinos, they don't have the sensitive, unique pink eyes. We absolutely love our big boy Casper. He's nearly 12ft long and to this day remains very, very aggressive - Mate, he is a snappy croc, so his all-time favorite is attacking the croc team during the daily croc shows." This is clearly evident in the terrifying clip featuring the croc and Robert Irwin.