Nile Crocodile - Reptiles

Nile Crocodile - map of occurrence

Nile Crocodile

Crocodylus niloticus

conservation status Least Concern

Weight: up to 1000kg (2.200lb), females cca 30% smaller than males
Lenght: up to 6.5m (21ft)
Wild population: 250.000-500.000 individuals
Lifespan: 75-100 years
Gestation: 16-80 eggs which hatch in 90 days
Voice: roar, growl
Range: whole Africa south from Sahara except JAR (only Kruger NP)
Habitat: african rivers, lakes and swamps

Protecting organisations: Crocodile Specialist Group

The Nile crocodile is the largest crocodilian in Africa and is sometimes regarded as the second largest crocodilian after the Saltwater crocodile. The largest accurately measured male was shot near Mwanza, Tanzania and measured 6.45 m (21.3 ft).
Like all crocodiles, they are quadrupeds with four short, splayed legs; long, powerful tails; a scaly hide with rows of ossified scutes running down their back and tail; and powerful jaws. They have nictitating membranes to protect their eyes and have lachrymal glands, and can cleanse their eyes with tears.
They normally crawl along on their bellies, but they can also "high walk" with their trunks raised above the ground. Smaller specimens can gallop, and even larger crocodiles are capable of surprising bursts of speeds, briefly reaching up to 12 to 14 km/h (7.5 to 8.5 mi/h). They can swim much faster by moving their body and tail in a sinouous fashion, and they can sustain this form of movement much longer at about 30 to 35 km/h.
The Nile crocodile is an opportunistic apex predator capable of taking almost any animal that is within attacking range. They start life very small however, therefore the diet of hatchlings consists of smaller prey. Hatchlings eat insects and small aquatic invertebrates, and quickly graduate to amphibians, reptiles, and birds. But even as an adult, a significant portion of a Nile crocodile's diet is fish and other small vertebrates. However, adult crocodiles prefer to consume larger prey to conserve energy.
Their ability to lie concealed with most of their body underwater, combined with their speed over short distances, makes them effective opportunistic hunters of larger prey. They grab such prey in their powerful jaws, drag it into the water, and hold it underneath until it drowns. They will also scavenge kills, although they avoid rotting meat. Groups of Nile crocodiles may travel hundreds of meters from a waterway to feast on a carcass.
Once their prey is dead, they rip off and swallow chunks of flesh. When groups of Nile crocodiles are sharing a kill, they use each other for leverage, biting down hard and then twisting their body to tear off large pieces of meat. This is called the death roll. They may also get the necessary leverage by lodging their prey under branches or stones, before rolling and ripping.

Nile Crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus) - Mara river teeth
Nile Crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus) - Mara river teethNile Crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus) - evening light headNile Crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus) - Nile Crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus) - Nile Crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus) - Nile Crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus) - Nile Crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus) - fish catchNile Crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus) - Nile Crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus) -
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camera:NIKON D200
lens:Sigma 120-300 mm F2.8 APO EX DG IF HSM
extender:Sigma APO 2.0 EX DG
focal length:600 mm
exposure time:1/1000 s
stativ:pytlík s rýží/beanbag
location:Masai Mara, Mara River