how did the nile crocodile get to florida

On its native continent of Africa, it is known as a vicious man-eater that claims around 200 lives per year. About the Nile Crocodile Regrettably, people who own dangerous pets without a license aren’t too prone to this type of responsive behavior. But how did this species make it all the way there? Upon first seeing it, expedition member Frank Mazzotti recalled thinking about how odd it looked compared to the species of the area. 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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. 10 Unreal Shiba Mixes You Have to See to Believe, 7 Family-Friendly Pet Breeds for Homes With Young Children, How To Help Anxious Cats To Live Their Best Life, The 100 Most Popular Boy and Girl Dog Names of 2020. Full-grown Nile crocodiles can be 16 feet long. 2016: Killer Nile crocodiles in Florida? But the state is also home to one of the Alligator's much smaller cousins--which is not supposed to be here. The first, a hatchling, was found on a front porch and sent to a Louisiana reptile exhibit. A native of Central and South America, the species first made it to Florida in the 1930s in an effort to control sugar cane pests. The Nile crocs can grow up to 17 feet, some three feet longer than the Florida crocodile. The first, a hatchling, was found on a front porch and sent to a Louisiana reptile exhibit. The Nile crocodile is widespread in Sub-Saharan Africa. There are about 1,000 American crocodiles in South Florida. The aggressive Nile crocodile can grow up to six metres (20ft) long, and around 200 people a year fall victim to the giant reptile in its native Africa. Read 3 reviews from the world's largest community for readers. However, the newly found Nile crocodile is a very different beast. Florida wetlands as well as coastal areas of Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas would also provide perfect refuge for the Nile croc. By. — The first, a hatchling, was found on a front porch and sent to a Louisiana reptile exhibit. Florida is home to a variety of both alligators and crocodiles, and in the states alligators are considered the more ferocious of the two. Scientists have confirmed that the Nile crocodile has been found in Florida’s Everglades. All three Nile crocodiles were captured in extreme South Florida. 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. Read 3 reviews from the world's largest community for readers. 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. The first, a hatchling, was found on a front porch and sent to a Louisiana reptile exhibit. Still, the species is considered a state-wide threat due to its potentially dangerous impact. Two years later, in 2014, a team of 10 researchers and university professors of the Fort Lauderdale Research and Education Center, scoured the Everglades to do the same. Read more As you might expect, the Nile River is full of Nile crocodiles. Apparently, it is as the Nile Crocodile has now been captured twice around Miami, Florida. 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. Experts say it's possible. Smithsonian Institution. “They didn’t swim from Africa. Privacy Statement The group also reported on a fourth individual had escaped from its enclosure at Billie Swamp Safari in 1996 or 1997, and was probably 4 to 5 feet long at the time. Illegal exotic pet ownership in Florida has created an unforeseen threat for both the residents of the area and the native crocodile population. Yes, the Everglades are full of crocodiles, but they’re native to America. The Nile crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus) is a large crocodilian native to freshwater habitats in Africa, where it is present in 26 countries.Due to its widespread occurrence and stable population trend, it has been listed as Least Concern on the IUCN Red List since 1996. This isn't the case everywhere in the world, however. Gigantic Alligator Caught on Florida Farm, Alligator Euthanized After Eating Florida Burglary Suspect. The invasive croc is known to prey upon a large range of animals, including cattle and humans. The first, a hatchling, was found on a front porch in Homestead, Florida in 2009 and sent to a Louisiana reptile exhibit. This huge reptile, which can grow to lengths of over 6 meters, is capable of taking down pretty much any animal that ventures too close to its watery domain. Florida's most famous resident is the American Alligator. This was because it wasn’t an American alligator or an Everglades alligator, but a Nile crocodile. In fact, only four have been reported so far, and all the loose crocodilians have been captured. All three Nile crocodiles were captured in extreme South Florida. (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); The Nile crocodile may be the biggest invader to take up residence in the Sunshine State, but it has plenty of company. But the question remains: How did they get here? Contrary to some headlines, these little crocs are not "man-eating." Cookie Policy All three Nile crocodiles were captured in extreme South Florida. Florida wetlands as well as coastal areas of Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas would also provide perfect refuge for the Nile croc. Nile Crocodile Facts: Introduction. The Nile crocodile is not the first invasive species to enter the state’s lines. However, average-sized specimens are 16 feet long and have a weight of 500 pounds. By. Still, up to this point there haven’t been too many cases similar to this. Dumb humans, most likely. All three Nile crocodiles were captured in extreme South Florida. As you might expect, the Nile River is full of Nile crocodiles. Not only could Nile crocodiles pose a threat to humans and native animals, but they could threaten the approximately 1,000 American crocodiles that already call the Everglades home either through competition or interbreeding. Several Nile crocodiles have been imported into Florida … Two years later, in 2014, a team of 10 researchers and university professors of the Fort Lauderdale Research and Education Center, scoured the Everglades to do the same. The largest of the three wasn't even three-feet long yet. Does the Nile River have crocodiles? 2020 BuzzSharer.com, This article is also published as a forum topic here ». Killer Nile crocodiles are in Florida – and no one knows how they got there. The researchers note that over the last decade, large groups of Nile crocodiles have been imported from South Africa and Madagascar for display at zoos like Disney’s Animal Kingdom and to supply Florida’s flourishing pet trade, with the latter being the most likely introduction pathway, according to the study. (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); 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. Florida, USA is quite a distance from Africa, so it’s quite a mystery as to how the Nile crocodile arrived in Florida. add this to the already impending doom of human blood sport, and we’ve got a soon to be endangered species. ). The Nile crocodile, which lives mostly in the eastern half of Africa and reaches lengths of up to 20 feet, is a much larger and more aggressive creature than Florida's native species, the American crocodile. — The first, a hatchling, was found on a front porch and sent to a Louisiana reptile exhibit. Still, the state of Florida has pleaded to its population for immediate action. The Nile Crocodile Invades Florida! And while American crocs are quite gentle, the ones from the Nile are a completely different story. The Nile Crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus) is an African crocodile and the second largest reptile in the world, after the saltwater crocodile. Two years later, in 2014, a team of 10 researchers and university professors of the Fort Lauderdale Research and Education Center, scoured the Everglades to do the same. The notable difference between the two species is that the former can grow considerably larger in size, as mentioned above. There are about 1,000 American crocodiles in South Florida. Scientists puzzled as to how the African reptiles made their way to the Florida Everglades There are about 1,000 American crocodiles in South Florida. Florida is home to a variety of both alligators and crocodiles, and in the states alligators are considered the more ferocious of the two. Two were related to each other. 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. Scientists were first alerted to the presence of "unusual looking crocodilians" by private citizens. Killer Nile crocodiles are in Florida – and no one knows how they got there. Scientifically known as the Crocodylus niloticus, the Nile crocodile is a carnivorous reptile that has quite the reputation. Florida wetlands as well as coastal areas of Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas would also provide perfect refuge for the Nile croc. The diet of the Nile crocodile is mainly fish, but it will attack almost anything unfortunate enough to cross its path, including zebras, small hippos, porcupines, birds, and other crocodiles. They crawl through rivers, freshwater marshes and mangrove swamps in sub-Saharan Africa, the Nile Basin and in Madagascar. This huge reptile, which can grow to lengths of over 6 meters, is capable of taking down pretty much any animal that ventures too close to its watery domain. Spectacled Caiman In the late 1940's and early 1950's, Florida was undergoing a tourist boom, as post-war middle-class Americans with disposable income sought vacations in the land… Upon hearing these statistics, the Nile crocodile is certainly one of the last predators on Earth you’d want to have in your vicinity. Why Do Cats Suddenly Attack Their Owners? book. While it sounds like the discovery of only three individuals isn't much cause for alarm, the researchers suspect there might be more out there. or By their very nature, crocodiles and alligators aren’t docile creatures. We can only hope that the attempt will be successful. (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); This happens mostly due to how close its natural habitat is to human settlements, as well as the fact that it has an indiscriminate diet. Marissa Fessenden is a freelance science writer and artist who appreciates small things and wide open spaces. Nile crocodiles have a considerably fiercer reputation than their American cousins.​. 2014: Nile Crocodile removed from Everglades National Park. There are about 1,000 American crocodiles in South Florida. The Nile crocodile’s powerful jaws hold 64 to 68 sharp, pointed teeth, which are replaced if they get broken. Final Thoughts Scientists were first alerted to the presence of "unusual looking crocodilians" by private citizens, the team reports in a paper for Herpetological Conservation and Biology. Florida, USA is quite a distance from Africa, so it’s quite a mystery as to how the Nile crocodile arrived in Florida. The results concluded that these crocodiles had indeed originated from South Africa. Florida wetlands as well as coastal areas of Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas would also provide perfect refuge for the Nile croc. So how the heck did these potentially human-flesh-hungry crocs get to the wilds of Florida? At about 16 feet long and 500 pounds, the Nile crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus) is Africa’s largest crocodile, and just a few years ago four of these crocs were found in southern Florida.Recently, researchers documented that introduction and published their … So how the heck did these potentially human-flesh-hungry crocs get to the wilds of Florida? 2014: Nile Crocodile removed from Everglades National Park. (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); © The Nile crocodile’s bite force has been recorded to be an incredible 22,000 newtons, making the Lion’s bone-crushing 4,450 newton bite seem more like a nibble. They can also grow to a length of 18 feet. There may be a deadly new invasive species lurking in Florida's swamps. — The first, a hatchling, was found on a front porch and sent to a Louisiana reptile exhibit. The Burmese python is well-known to be an invasive species in the Florida Everglades; however, there seems to be another major invasive reptile in the wetland: The Nile crocodile. It certainly didn’t swim across the Atlantic, so here’s what you need to know. Keep up-to-date on: © 2020 Smithsonian Magazine. The Threat upon Florida All three Nile crocodiles were captured in extreme South Florida. Three specimens have been discovered over the past five years. Get the best of Smithsonian magazine by email. What is more, Florida has a reputation for illegal exotic animal holding. The DNA analysis shows that they didn't match animals kept at Florida attractions such as Disney's Animal Kingdom, so they must have been brought to the state illegally, reports Terry Spencer for the Associated Press (via the Orlando Sentinel). However, the newly found Nile crocodile is a very different beast. California Do Not Sell My Info The third probably was as well, but problems with the quality of DNA kept the researchers from figuring this out for sure. So there's no need to worry about Florida's crocodiles, right? A team of scientists has identified three reptiles captured near Miami as Nile crocodiles, a species native to Africa. Florida wetlands as well as coastal areas of Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas would also provide perfect refuge for the Nile croc. 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. At about 16 feet long and 500 pounds, the Nile crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus) is Africa’s largest crocodile, and just a few years ago four of these crocs were found in southern Florida.Recently, researchers documented that introduction and published their … The giant reptiles have also been reported in … In 2009, 2011 and 2014, Nile crocodiles were captured by scientists in Florida for testing. The Nile crocodile’s bite force is several times that of a lion. It’s still unclear how the Nile crocodiles wound up in Florida, but the scientists who conducted the study have some guesses. They crawl through rivers, freshwater marshes and mangrove swamps in sub-Saharan Africa, the Nile Basin and in Madagascar. The Nile crocodile is a member of the Crocodilia order. Yep! How did these creatures get to Florida, nearly 8,000 miles from South Africa? The Nile Crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus) is an African crocodile and the second largest reptile in the world, after the saltwater crocodile. 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