Scientifically known as the Crocodylus niloticus, the Nile crocodile is a carnivorous reptile that has quite the reputation. It certainly didn’t swim across the Atlantic, so here’s what you need to know. The Threat upon Florida All three Nile crocodiles were captured in extreme South Florida – one in 2009, one in 2011 and one in 2014 – the report added. Does Florida have crocs? Florida can now add the notorious Nile crocodile to the list of exotic and dangerous non-native species that have been found in the sunshine state. The researchers note that between 2010 and 2014, Nile crocodiles in Africa were responsible for at least 354 deaths and 493 attacks on humans. As of right now, Florida Wildlife Conservation Commission officials aren’t worried, and believe they have captured all the Nile crocodiles in the area, since there have been no other confirmed sightings and no unaccounted for captive animals. When the researchers located the crocodile in a canal, Mazzotti recalls, the question on everyone's mind was whether it was "going to come willingly." On the other hand, when Nile crocs are in their native habitat, "fully grown adults are much more prone to looking at humans as food." "How these crocodiles got into Florida is a mystery, but their presence is both fascinating and somewhat alarming because there could be more out there, and they're potentially dangerous to humans," Ken Warren, a spokesman for the U.S. We can only hope that the attempt will be successful. Still, the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, which lists the Nile crocodile as threatened because of its declining population in its native habitats, says the University of Florida findings are concerning. All three Nile crocodiles were captured in extreme South Florida. And while American crocs are quite gentle, the ones from the Nile are a completely different story. 2020, This article is also published as a forum topic here », The 100 Most Popular Boy and Girl Dog Names of 2020, How these 12 dog breeds got their original names, How To Properly Give Your Pets Natural Oils, How to Feed a Dog With a Sensitive Stomach. Florida is also home to a native crocodilian — the American crocodile (Crocodylus acutus) is found along the southern coastline of the peninsula and out into the Keys. Nile Crocs can get up to 20 feet long and kill about 200 people in Africa every year. Still, up to this point there haven’t been too many cases similar to this. A University of Florida herpetologist said he isn’t sure how the Nile crocodile got into the Everglades. See why nearly a quarter of a million subscribers begin their day with the Starting 5. It's not time to panic just yet. Only four have ever been reported to have done so, likely the same four the University of Florida researchers studied. The only possible solution to this situation is if their owners surrender them willingly and without any incidents. Mazzotti and other researchers from the University of Florida studied that crocodile and three other strange-looking crocs captured between 2000 and 2014, and they recently published their findings in the journal Herpetological Conservation and Biology. About the Nile Crocodile (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); powered by. This means that, when one or more escape under these circumstances, the incident will go unreported and lead to complications. Apparently, it is as the Nile Crocodile has now been captured twice around Miami, Florida. The Nile crocodile looks almost identical to the American crocodile, Crocodylus acutus. What is more, Florida has a reputation for illegal exotic animal holding. Someone else had caught this particular reptile once before, back in 2012, but quickly released it because he didn't have the permit to keep it. "The American crocodile is one of the most gentle species of crocodilian," Mazzotti says. But how did this species make it all the way there? Illegal exotic pet ownership in Florida has created an unforeseen threat for both the residents of the area and the native crocodile population. Still, the species is considered a state-wide threat due to its potentially dangerous impact. Deadly Nile Crocodiles Found In Florida Waters. Let’s find out. Researchers with the University of Florida and elsewhere found out about the crocodile and went to hunt it down. Using a DNA analysis, they determined all four were related to Nile crocodiles, or Crocodylus niloticus, which are native to various parts of Africa. However, a worrying population seems to be on the rise in the American state of Florida. “I think this will open people’s eyes to the problem,” says Krysko. After a long and strenuous chase, they finally managed to capture the reptile. To continue reading login or create an account. Their presence in the state of Florida isn’t a threat only to the human population of the area, but also for its native crocs. It eats just about anything — including humans. This was because it wasn’t an American alligator or an Everglades alligator, but a Nile crocodile. As of last week, 82 facilities in Florida held licenses for Class I Crocodylia, a designation that includes Nile crocs. Even though this might seem considerably less, they are still rather large reptiles. They are the American Aligator’s violent cousin and are not to be taken lightly. Because Nile crocodiles are larger, they can easily compete with the much smaller Floridian reptiles, and even hunt them for sport. University of Florida researchers say they are the first to document Nile crocodiles in the state out of captivity, though all of the animals had escaped enclosures. Posted on May 19, 2016, at 10:54 p.m. The Nile crocodile’s presence isn’t prevalent quite yet, but it could very well be soon enough if this toxic trade doesn’t come to an end. "We do what we that when a species is introduced, you have an early detection, you have a rapid response, and you remove it, and none of those bad things happen. The researchers say these are the first documented cases of Nile crocodiles in Florida out of captivity. Nile crocs are usually bronze or brownish yellow; alligators are blackish green. Genetic tests of the Florida Nile crocs revealed that two (and possibly a third) are most closely related to Nile crocodiles found in South Africa. At this point, it’s more a question of civic duty than anything else. Gigantic Alligator Caught on Florida Farm, Alligator Euthanized After Eating Florida Burglary Suspect. Nile crocodiles are safely bred in a facility in the state, but there certainly are a lot of irresponsible individuals out there who enjoy owning Nile crocodiles without a proper permit. Their predatory tendencies have earned them the reputation as one of the biggest threats to humans and wildlife alike. They live throughout sub-Saharan Africa, the Nile Basin, and Madagascar in rivers, freshwater marshes, and mangrove swamps. Poll ; Watch Live. These massive, predatory beasts can grow up to 20 feet (6 meters) long and weigh more than 1,600 pounds (725 kilograms). In an interesting twist, the captured crocodiles are all related to each other, but not to any other Nile crocodiles kept (legally) in Florida, at licensed attractions like Disney’s Animal Kingdom. The first documented appearance of the Nile crocodile in Florida was back in 2012, when someone caught it and had to release it back into the wild due to lack of a proper permit. Unfortunately for the residents of the American state of Florida, the nightmare of many Africans is now their own as well. Final Thoughts Show Clips. An April 2016 study in the journal Herpetological Conservation and Biology has confirmed the presence of Nile crocodiles (Crocodylus niloticus), native to Africa, in South Florida. Both crocodiles and alligators are indigenous to Florida. Among crocodilians today, only the saltwater crocodile occurs over a broader geographic area, although other species, especially the spectacled caiman(Caiman crocodilus) (due to its small size and extreme adaptability in habitat and flexibility in diet), seem to actually be more abundant. Fish and Wildlife Service, says by email. Nile Crocodiles, however, are feral and were introduced fairly recently. In 2014, 10 or so people were scouring Everglades National Park at the southern tip of Florida in an attempt to capture a crocodile. By their very nature, crocodiles and alligators aren’t docile creatures. Upon hearing these statistics, the Nile crocodile is certainly one of the last predators on Earth you’d want to have in your vicinity. Using DNA analysis, University of Florida researchers have confirmed the capture of multiple Nile crocodiles in the wild. add this to the already impending doom of human blood sport, and we’ve got a soon to be endangered species. Four Nile crocodiles have been found in Florida by scientists from the University of Florida. In 2009, 2011 and 2014, Nile crocodiles were said to be living in Florida swamps and were confirmed as Nile crocodiles by a DNA test – it is unclear how they made the 6,000-mile journey but sources think that they were brought over illegally. (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); Previously, using DNA analysis, they found three Nile crocs: one was a foot long hatchling sitting on a porch in Miami. "All that really means is that they've escaped captivity, and it doesn't mean that they're established and breeding," he says. That facility bred Nile crocodiles and said it would no longer do so, according to the spokeswoman. Nile crocodiles have been captured in the Everglades in 2009, 2011, and 2014. The notable difference between the two species is that the former can grow considerably larger in size, as mentioned above. Michelle Broder Van Dyke BuzzFeed News Reporter. Nile crocodiles are from Africa. Researchers have confirmed that three Nile crocodiles were captured near … Three Nile crocodiles found in Florida swamps. ", You have 4 free articles remaining this month, Sign-up to our daily newsletter for more articles like this + access to 5 extra articles. Nile crocodiles have been introduced to Mississippi and Florida in the past but were recaptured before they established themselves in … However, average-sized specimens are 16 feet long and have a weight of 500 pounds. For video troubleshooting and help click here. The first, a hatchling, was found on a front porch and sent to a Louisiana reptile exhibit. These officials conduct regular routine inspections and surveys to look out for exotic and invasive species. The Nile crocodile is presently the most common crocodilian in Africa, and is distributed throughout much of the continent.
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