Painful encounters

Selfie tourist bitten by croc at Thai park

The French tourist being tended to by medics and rangers after she was bitten by a crocodile as she was trying to take a selfie.
The French tourist being tended to by medics and rangers after she was bitten by a crocodile as she was trying to take a selfie.PHOTO: KHAO YAI NATIONAL PARK

BANGKOK • A French tourist was bitten by a crocodile at a Thai national park as she tried to get close to the animal to take a selfie, an official said yesterday.

The incident took place on Sunday afternoon in Khao Yai, a popular national park north of Bangkok.

"She wanted to take a selfie with the crocodile that was lying down near a stream," a park official told news agency Agence France-Presse, asking not to be named because he did not have the authority to speak to the media.

"It was startled and bit her on the leg."

The official said two crocodiles have made their home in that particular section of the park for years and that there are warning signs present.

"I guess she wanted to see it for real," the official added.

BITTEN FOR SELFIE

I guess she wanted to see it for real. ''

A PARK OFFICIAL, on the tourist who was bitten at Khao Yai National Park.

Local media took photos of park rangers carrying the 47-year-old victim, who had a thick bandage wrapped around her knee.

The victim was taken to hospital in stable condition.

Siamese crocodiles were once ubiquitous in South-east Asia, but their populations have been decimated in the last century by hunting and habitat loss.

They are currently listed as critically endangered on the Red List of the International Union for Conservation of Nature.

There are just a handful of wild crocodiles left in Thailand.

Most tourists will see them only in crocodile parks, many of which have been criticised by animal rights groups for controversial feeding practices.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 03, 2017, with the headline 'Selfie tourist bitten by croc at Thai park '. Print Edition | Subscribe