Four years ago, a Nile crocodile was brought to SanWild by the Letaba SPCA. The animal was injured and had strayed into a residential area and had taken up refuge in a nursery dam. Fortunately for the crocodile he was found by someone that cared and they in returned for the local animal welfare organization for help.
After fully recovering from his injuries the crocodile was released into Jespha’s Dam where he has learnt to provide for himself and has grown into a healthy young Nile Crocodile. After being treated intensively while in the rehabilitation center the crocodile started responding to certain people’s voices. This made his release to the wild much easier as we could continue to provide supplement feeding immediately after releasing him into the dam.
Named after one of the SanWild staff, young Lloyd has become a force to be reckoned with. He will continue to grow to eventually weigh in between 225 up to 750 kilograms.
Read more about the Nile Crocodile below.
The Nile crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus) is an African crocodile and may be considered the second largest extant reptile in the world, after the saltwater crocodile (Crocodylus porosus). The Nile crocodile is quite widespread throughout Sub-Saharan Africa, occurring mostly in the central, eastern, and southern regions of the continent and lives in different types of aquatic environments such as lakes, rivers and marshlands. Although capable of living in saline environments, this species is rarely found in saltwater, but occasionally inhabits deltas and brackish lakes. The range of this species once stretched northward throughout the Nile, as far north as the Nile delta. On average, the adult male Nile crocodile is between 3.5 and 5 m (11 ft 6 in and 16 ft 5 in) in length and weighs 225 to 750 kg (496 to 1,653 lb). However, specimens exceeding 6.1 m (20 ft 0 in) in length and weighing up to 1,090 kg (2,400 lb) have been recorded. Sexual dimorphism is prevalent, and females are usually about 30% smaller than males. They have thick scaly skin that is heavily armored.
The Nile crocodile is an opportunistic apex predator and a very aggressive species of crocodile that is capable of taking almost any animal within its range. They are generalists, taking a variety of prey. Their diet consists mostly of different species of fish, reptiles, birds and mammals. The Nile crocodile is an ambush predator that can wait for hours, days and even weeks for the suitable moment to attack. They are agile predators and wait for the opportunity for a prey item to come well within attack range. Even swift prey are not immune to attack. Like other crocodiles, Nile crocodiles have an extremely powerful bite that is unique amongst all animals and sharp conical teeth that sink into flesh allowing for a grip that is almost impossible to loosen. They can apply high levels of force for extended periods of time, a great advantage for holding down large prey underwater to drown.
Nile crocodiles are relatively social crocodiles. They share basking spots and large food sources, such as schools of fish and big carcasses. There is a strict hierarchy, which is determined by size. Large, old males are at the top of this hierarchy and have primary access to food and the best basking spots. Crocodiles tend to respect this order; when it is infringed, the results are often violent and sometimes fatal. Like most other reptiles, Nile crocodiles lay eggs; these are guarded by the female. The hatchlings are also protected for a period of time, but hunt by themselves and are not fed by the parents. The Nile crocodile is one of the most dangerous species of crocodile and is responsible for hundreds of human deaths every year. It is a rather common species of crocodile and is not endangered despite some regional declines or extinctions.
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