Saturday 21 May 2011

Giant Croc.

Jaws III, the croc in captivity
Jaws was one of four salt-water crocodile hatchlings imported from Singapore by the Central Leather Research Institute, Madras, back in the early 1970s. The organisation planned to slaughter them after five years to assess the feasibility of crocodile farming.In 1973, when his surveys showed that wild crocs were almost gone, Rom wanted to start breeding crocodiles at the Madras Snake Park, and went to the Institute to have a look at the reptiles.As he walked around the murky pond with Rajamani, an Irula friend, one of the three-foot salties suddenly erupted out of the water and grabbed Rajamani's leg. This was their first encounter with the species, and they realised it was a very different croc from the easy-going mugger they were used to.
Dealing with such a large animal can sometimes be awkwardly dangerous. Once, Jaws had to be moved to a bigger enclosure. After his ropes were untied, everyone was to jump off at the same time at the count of three. Rom began counting “One…”, and his nervous crew immediately leapt off the reptile's back, leaving him alone, straddling Jaws' shoulders. Feeling the weight on him lighten, the croc moved forward and Rom fell back. Thankfully, the animal was more interested in getting into the water.Today, at 16 feet plus and weighing between 500 and 600 kg, Jaws is the largest croc in captivity in India.
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