Giant Monster Maneaters!

I've always been fascinated by Great White sharks, but have only just realised that Jaws is not the largest nor most dangerous water dwelling man-eater.

Enter the Crocodile.

Out of all wild predators who attack humans for food, the Saltwater and Nile Crocodiles are the most prolific and dangerous. Each year, hundreds of deadly attacks occur, mostly in Africa and Southeast Asia. Some sources suggest that up to 2000 people are killed by the monsters each year. That's about 5 people each day.

Chew on that for a minute.

I've been doing a bit of googling, and am freaking myself out by what I'm reading...

According to Wikipedia, the largest recorded crocodile is a giant saltwater crocodile measured at 8.6 metres and 1,352 kilograms shot in Queensland Australia in 1957. The largest living crocodile documented is a 7.1 metres long, in Orissa, India. It lives in Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary and in June 2006, was entered in the Guinness Book of World Records.

Lifesized replica of crocodile killed in 1957

I never knew crocodiles could be so huge... but it gets worse.

A crocodile exists today that is at least 6.1 metres long. It has been responsible for 300 human deaths, and has allegedly eaten an entire adult hippopotamus. Nicknamed 'Gustav', it lives along the Ruzizi river in Africa. The most recent sighting was in April 2007.

Other fun facts I bet you didn't know:

Crocodiles are adept at learning and memorizing routines, such as the location of nearby campers or the routes of travellers.

Crocodiles can slow their metabolism to such an extent that a tree with an intruder hiding in its branches may be guarded continuously for several weeks, without breaks for food.

There is a sensitive flap in a crocodile's throat, known as the 'glottis' which they use for breathing. As a result, forcing the arm into the roat may encourage release, although this may instead lead to the arm being severed.

Sweet dreams ;-)

7 comments:

PaisleyJade said...

And now folks, you can all see why I have been put off surfing, thanks to Mandrakes research obsession...

Katie said...

Anyone want Steve Irwin's old job?

lesmondj said...

Loving it...praise God for New Zealand I say!

Jon Dylan said...

"Crocodiles are adept at learning and memorizing complicated algorithms and calculus sums, such as the sum of the hypotenuse plus the tangent of the equal sides."

Symon said...

Jon... words fail me.

jacksta said...

I miss Steve Irwin =(

Fifi said...

I just found out NZ doesn't even have snakes..at all! Weird. Hey Popa S, they were talking about giant Crocs at the creation science thing on Monday night..imagine a croc 2 stories high?!!