Two male Proserpine River crocs vie for waterway supremacy.
Two male Proserpine River crocs vie for waterway supremacy. Mark Norman

Proserpine River crocs go toe to toe

IT'S not every day you see two 3.8 meter crocodiles facing off and butting heads in the Proserpine River.

That is exactly what Proserpine River croc guide Mark Norman managed to capture in an extraordinary video on Monday.

The two saltwater crocodiles in the video can be seen swimming side by side and occasionally lifting themselves out of the water and smacking their heads together.

Passengers on board the Whitsunday Crocodile Safari boat can be heard gasping in shock as Mr Norman delivered a running commentary of what is going on.

"Incredible,” he said.

"That was a big headbutt.”

Mr Norman said the crocs were two males that were new to the area and were looking to show three nearby females who was king croc.

"(The display) was typical of male to male dominance. They were sizing each other up and trying to assert their dominance over one another,” he said.

With a lifespan of up to 70 years, Mr Norman said these ones were "youngsters” at the age of about 20.

For over half an hour the reptiles put on a show for guests aboard the Whitsunday Crocodile Safari vessel and Mr Norman said the passengers "were blown away”.

"You don't get that every day, it was a very special moment,” he said.

Crocs were hunted almost to extinction in the Proserpine River until they were declared a protected species in 1974.

Since then numbers have steadily increased and now the river has reached saturation point.

"We have not seen any population increase in the past few years,” Mr Norman said.