Police in Zambia received reports of a pair of human feet discovered in the stomach of a dead crocodile last week, the gruesome incident immediately sparking an investigation.
According to a statement released by Copperbelt Police Commanding Officer Peacewell Mweemba, the feet were found inside the crocodile on Monday at around 2:00 pm. The disturbing discovery was made in the mining town of Mufulira near the Zambian border with the Democratic Republic of Congo.
In the wake of the unexpected find, Kidwell Marowatsanga, a local resident, reported the remains to local police. Per Officer Mweemba, Marowatsanga was responsible for the crocodile’s death. However, the circumstances surrounding the killing remain unknown.
Police investigating the incident say that the feet likely belonged to a missing person who suffered a crocodile attack. That said, police haven’t received any reports of a missing person in recent weeks.
“We received information from Kidwell Marowatsanga to the effect that two human feet were found in the stomach of a crocodile which they killed,” Mweemba explained to the Zambian Observer. “The police rushed to the scene and took photographs of the same. The two human feet have been picked [up] and taken to Ronald Ross hospital mortuary pending investigations.”
Human Feet Discovered in Crocodile’s Stomach Among Many Recent Concerning Incidents
The discovery of the human feet marked the only concerning crocodile incident in the area in recent memory. However, it was far from the sole incident worldwide.
In February, wildlife officials shot and killed a 12-foot crocodile after observing the reptile aggressively stalking surfers and swimmers in Queensland, Australia. The croc didn’t injure anyone, but its actions marked it a nuisance animal, forcing officials to put it down.
A mere week later, officials euthanized another crocodile that attacked a man and his dog in Queensland. Sadly, the dog lost its life in the attack.
Back in January, a 9-year-old little girl from Namibia escaped the jaws of a crocodile thanks to her brother. The 19-year-old successfully wrestled the crocodile away from his sister. Though she made it out alive, the girl suffered severe injuries in the attack.
Despite their reputation for eating pets, feet, and other human body parts, crocodiles don’t specifically hunt humans. They are, however, opportunistic feeders, meaning they eat what’s available at the time. As a result, around 1,000 humans fall victim to fatal crocodile attacks annually.
This number might seem staggering, but it’s far fewer deaths than those caused by less frightening animals. Experts estimate that mosquitos, for instance, kill close to a million humans per year.
And though they appear harmless, freshwater snails kill around 200,000. The tiny mollusks carry a parasitic disease called schistosomiasis, which is fatal if left untreated.