Wednesday, January 5, 2011

CROCODILES!

Crocodiles are big, scary reptiles with pointy snouts and tons of very sharp teeth.  They like to lurk in the water where you don't see them, and then when you are totally not expecting it, they grab you by the leg and pull you under water and eat you.  And what crocodiles most like to eat are fish, birds, zebras, wildebeests, humans, and basenjis.  Well, I assume they would eat a basenji if one got close enough to the water.  But since most basenjis don't like water, maybe not that many that get eaten by crocodiles.  At least I hate to think of my distant basenji cousins in Africa getting gobbled up by crocs!



There are several different kinds of crocodiles, and they live in different parts of the world wherever there is a tropical climate, like for instance in Australia, Africa, Asia, and the Americas.  Crocodiles have been around for eons and eons.  They were probably around when there were dinosaurs, but they didn't go extinct like the dinosaurs did.  The smallest crocodile species is about 3 feet long, and the biggest ones can be 15 feet long and weigh over 2,600 pounds.





Crocodiles can swim really fast and they can also go pretty fast on land, which helps them catch their prey.  They have very, very strong jaw muscles, and they can bite down harder than any other animal.  They can bite with a force of 2,000 pounds, which is way harder than even a pitbull or a great white shark can bite.  But once crocodiles shut their jaws, they can't open them again so easily.  Which is why you see those crocodile hunters on TV wrapping tape around the crocs' jaws to keep them shut.  Oh, and crocodiles have a special membrane thing in their mouths which makes it so that they can't stick out their tongues, so you will never see a croc mock you by sticking out its tongue at you!


A crocodile farm in Australia
It's hard to tell how old a crocodile is, but scientists think that crocs live an average of 70 years, and some of the oldest ones are over 100 years old.  A lot of crocodiles are raised on crocodile farms, and this is so that their hide can be used to make stuff like shoes and purses.  Also there are a lot of people who like to eat crocodile meat.  I have never tasted crocodile meat, but I'm thinking it might be pretty yummy.







Okay, well, now that I told you about how scary crocodiles are, I will tell you that there is a woman in Australia named Vicki Lowing, and she has three crocodiles as pets!  And these crocs are not out in the back yard.  No, they live right inside her house!









The crocodiles' names are Johnie, Jilfia, and Fovian.  The oldest one is Johnie, and she's a girl croc, even though she has a boy's name.  Johnie was left on Mrs. Lowing's doorstep in 1996.  Soon after that, Johnie got sick, and Mrs. Lowing, who is a nurse, had to take care of the croc until she was healthy again.  Mrs. Lowing says that this made a special bond between her and Johnie.  She even says that Johnie can communicate thoughts to her, like for instance if she needs some extra TLC.  At first Mrs. Lowing thought that Johnie was a boy, but you can't tell the sex of crocodiles until they are about 5 years old.  So then Mrs. Lowing found out that Johnie was really a girl, but she didn't change the name.








Mrs. Lowing lets Johnie roam all over her house and sleep in bed with her son and go for rides in her car.  Also she takes Johnie out for walks on a leash.  Mrs. Lowing's son, Andrew, has grown up with a crocodile in the house, but some of his friends get freaked out when they see the crocs.





Jilfia is 3 years old, so Mrs. Lowing doesn't know what sex that crocodile is yet.  Jilfia is 8 feet long and has a nastier temper than the other two crocs, so Mrs. Lowing doesn't get as chummy with him/her as she does with Johnie.

Fovian is the baby of the family and lives in the bathroom.  All 3 crocodiles have separate pools because they can be territorial and might get into fights.  Each one of them has heaters and sunlamps to keep their bodies warm enough.






Mrs. Lowing used to be married, but after she adopted Johnie, she started having lots of arguments with her husband.  He said she cared more about the crocodile than about him, and he wanted her to get rid of Johnie.  But Mrs. Lowing couldn't do that because she said, "Husbands can look after themselves but my crocodile can't make his meals."  So in 2005, they got a divorce.









I didn't even ask Mom if we could have a pet crocodile because I don't want one.  Mom says she thinks all reptiles are kind of creepy, and she believes that Australian lady might have a screw loose.  Sometimes we watch a show on Animal Planet that is called "Fatal Attraction," and it is about people who have dangerous animals as pets, like for instance tigers or poisonous snakes or chimpanzees or bulls, and then those pets attack them and sometimes kill them.  Well, when I learned the story about Mrs. Lowing and her 3 crocodiles, it reminded me of that show.  I just hope nothing bad happens with her crocodiles!



This is not a Photoshop trick!
You can go here to read the story.

1 comment:

  1. they are not monsters,but they should stay in the wild where they belong. We should just leave them alone and stop people from hurting them. This is also for all of the animals that are not given a chance to live just because people think they are monsters. Pitbulls are a good exsample.

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