Goannas’ bloody 10-minute battle caught on camera

AN EPIC 10-minute fight between two sand goannas has been captured on film in Rockhampton, right outside the pen of a well-known crocodile.

John McGrath, 43, had just pulled up to work at Rockhampton's Koorana Crocodile Farm about 8.30am December 11 when he spotted the tussle before he even exited his car.

"I parked the car and went 'Oh look at that!'," he said.

He grabbed his camera and got down low to record the fight, with the goannas - one covered in blood - ignoring him.

"They were pretty interested in each other," he said.

Mr McGrath, of Yeppoon, said the fight went for about 10 minutes outside the pen of the farm's most famous crocodile, King Wally.

He said the tussle looked a lot like a "drunken dance," or sumo wrestling.

"It was like sumo wrestling, one had to pin the other one down," he said.

The goannas are believed to have been fighting over a female, though Mr McGrath said he did not see any other reptiles around.

In two videos posted to the Koorana Crocodile Farm's Facebook page, blood can be seen over the body of one of the approximately 50cm long goannas as they bite and wrestle each other to the ground a number of times while bother puffing up the skin under their necks before one gave up and ran away.

The second goanna chased after the loser of the battle.

Mr McGrath said he was a nature lover who spent a lot of time looking around but had never seen sand goannas fighting before.

He said there were a lot of goannas hanging around the commercial crocodile farm and tourist attraction at the moment.

"There's good, sandy soil here and a tonne of burrows at the moment," he said.

"They're probably interested in some of the excess food that goes around with feeding the crocs.

"They're also probably interested in the croc eggs as it's nesting season at the moment, though we raid the nests every day or two."

The crocodile eggs are placed in incubators to increase the chances of the babies surviving.

Reptile experts have previously said it was uncommon to encounter a fight between goannas.