A North West girl is recovering in hospital after she was bitten by a crocodile while she was swimming with her two friends.
The 15-year-old young girl, Hesmari van Loggensberg accidentally stepped onto something moving, seemingly like a crocodile, which bit her on the leg in Eland's river, near Swartruggens.
"The two boys who were swimming with her heard a loud scream and ran to a nearby house for help.
"Fortunately two men responded to their plea and ran to assist the girl who was then later taken to hospital by ambulance in Rustenburg," the North West Department of Economic Development, Environment, Conservation and Tourism (DEDECT) said on Friday.
The men managed to assist the girl and claimed to have seen a quick glimpse of the crocodile.
According to the department, the girl sustained bite mark wounds on her leg.
After the incident was reported to the department, it immediately dispatched its problem Animal Control Specialist and Biodiversity Conservation Officers to the scene to search for the crocodile.
The officers are currently continuing with the search for the crocodile as it may further pose danger to communities residing around Elands River.
"Naturally we would not expect any crocodile in the Elands River but we are aware of captive facilities where crocodiles are bred in that area.
"Furthermore our Biodiversity Officers are embarking on thorough investigation to determine where the crocodile may have come from and the law will take its course.
"The department is in the process of erecting warning signs to caution communities on the possibilities of existing crocodiles in the river and danger they may pose," said Jonathan Denga: Director: Biodiversity Management from the department.
Members of the public around and nearby the river are urged to exercise caution when approaching the waters and anyone who may have spotted the animal must immediately contact the District problem Animal Control Specialist Vasti Botha on 0837617497 or the South African Police Service (SAPS).