A saltwater crocodile weighing more than a tonne and suspected of killing two people in the Philippines was recently declared the largest such reptile in captivity by the Guinness Book of World Records. Here are some other members of the crocodilian family.
The gharial is native to the Indian subcontinent. As the species has undergone both chronic long term and a rapid short-term declines it is listed as a Critically Endangered by IUCN. The gharial is one of three crocodilians native to India, apart from the mugger and the saltwater crocodile. It is one of the longest of all living crocodilians. Gharials are bred in captivity in the National Chambal Sanctuary in Uttar Pradesh, and in the Gharial Breeding Centre in Nepal’s Chitwan National Park.
The American alligator is a reptile endemic to the Southeastern United States. It is larger than the other extant alligator species, the Chinese alligator. The American alligator inhabits freshwater wetlands, such as marshes and cypress swamps. In 1967, the alligator was listed as an endangered species. A combined effort by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, state wildlife agencies in the South, and the creation of large, commercial alligator farms were instrumental in aiding the American alligator’s recovery.
Caimans inhabit Central and South America. They are relatively small crocodilians, with most species reaching lengths of only a few meters, although one species, the Black caiman, can exceed 13 ft in length. Once common, the Black Caiman, was hunted to near extinction primarily for its commercially valuable hide. It is now listed as Conservation Dependent. Overall, a little-known species, it was not researched in any detail until the 1980s, when the leather-trade had already taken its toll.
The saltwater crocodile also known as the estuarine or Indo-Pacific crocodile, is the largest of all living reptiles. It is found in suitable habitats from Northern Australia through Southeast Asia to the eastern coast of India. The saltwater crocodile is an opportunistic apex predator capable of taking nearly any animal that enters its territory, either in the water or on dry land. They are known to attack humans who enter their territory.
Films have a nasty habit of vilifying animals and crocodiles are no exception, here are five films on crocs
Alligator is a 1980 film that follows the attempts of a police officer named David Madison and a reptile expert named Marisa Kendall to stop a deadly giant alligator that is killing humans in the sewers of Chicago.
Black Water is a 2007 Australian film set in the mangrove seas of northern Australia. It was written and directed by Andrew Traucki and David Nerlich and stars Diana Glenn, Maeve Dermody and Andy Rodoreda. The film was inspired by the true story of a crocodile attack in Australia’s Northern Territory in December 2003.
Blood Surf is a 2001 film about a pair of entrepreneurs who hit upon the idea of blood surfing: spreading chum in the water in order to attract sharks, then hopping on a surfboard and riding through the middle of the pack. As they’re filming their promotional documentary, the fun gets interrupted by a thirty-foot long salt water crocodile that begins snacking on everyone in the expedition.
Lake Placid is a 1999 film revolving around a giant, 30-foot-long man-eating crocodile which terrorises the fictional location of Black Lake, Maine, United States, and also follows the dysfunctional group who attempt to capture or destroy the creature. The film’s financial success spawned two made-for-television sequels, Lake Placid 2 in 2007, Lake Placid 3 in 2010. Lake Placid: The Final Chapter which will be released in 2012.