28 Aug 2013 15:46:48
Dangerous and Deadly: Saltwater Crocodile
Watch crocodile feeding in Sydney
Kids and adults visiting WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo during the school holiday will have the chance to come face-to-face with the largest saltwater crocodile in New South Wales - and one of the largest in the world! Also, during the Zoo's Dangerous and Deadly event from 21 September to 6 October 2013, brave visitors can take the opportunity to watch this HUGE croc eat.
Why are saltwater crocodiles dangerous and deadly?
Saltwater crocodiles are the largest reptile on Earth and have the strongest bite force of any creature in the animal kingdom! These two deadly traits also make the salt water crocodile an extreme apex predator - meaning they are at the top of the food chain!
Crocs are the greatest hide and seek players on Earth because they hunt by stealth! It may look like a river is free of crocs but they have many amazing adaptations to help them sneak up on their prey.
They do this by camouflaging perfectly with their habitat and holding their breath. In fact, crocodiles can hold their breath for over two hours! Also, crocs' eyes, ears and nose are all on the top of their heads so they can keep almost their entire body below the water and out of sight! They have irregular scales all down their back so when they move through the water they barely make a ripple. They could eat everything from a mud crab up to a Water buffalo for dinner.
What is dangerous and deadly to salt water crocodiles?
Other saltwater crocodiles! Male crocodiles are very territorial and will battle with other males for their part of the river. Male-on-male combat will usually consist with male crocs sizing each other up by swimming alongside one another and gaping to show of how big they are. If one is bigger than the other, the bigger crocodile will usually automatically win with the smaller swimming off. However, if they are the same size, the crocs will have to battle! These battles can lead to the loss of digits, limbs, jaws and even lives!
Another danger to the crocodile, is hunting. Humans hunting these large animals nearly drove crocs to extinction until it was banned in the 1970s. When banned, croc farms were established across northern Australia. Today crocodile breeding for leather products is big business as their skin is one of the most valuable on the planet.
Where can I learn more about salt water crocodiles?
WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo on Darling Harbour has crocodile talks every day! The Zoo will also start to feed Rex whole chickens during the Dangerous and Deadly event. At this feed and keeper talk, guests can get up-close to this massive beast of a croc and ask questions to the keeper.
Meet Rex, WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo's salt water croc
WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo is home to one of the world's largest crocodiles, Rex! He stretches out to 5 metres and weighs over a whopping 700 kilograms. Click here to read more about one of the largest crocs!