Crocodile – Specialty Animal
A crocodile is any species belonging to the family Crocodylidae and is one of the largest living reptiles. They have long, low, cigar-shaped bodies, short legs and long powerful tails with which to swim. They have tough hides, long, pointed snouts and sharp teeth. Their webbed feet allow them to walk on the soft ground. Their eyes and nostrils are higher that the rest of the head and fits in with the crocodile’s life in the water for they like to float with only their eyes and nostrils above the surface. They have a slit-like valve in their throat which shuts tight when under water, keeping water from entering through the mouth. Crocodiles live in tropical countries throughout the world and prefer large bodies of shallow water, sluggish rivers, open swamps and marshes. Crocodiles are protected in many parts of the world, but they are also farmed commercially. Commercial crocodile farming began in Australia in the 1980’s and there are currently 18 farms there. Their hide is tanned and used to make leather goods such as shoes and handbags and their meat is considered a delicacy. Farming has resulted in an increase in the crocodile population in Australia as eggs are usually harvested from the wild, so landowners have an incentive to conserve crocodile habitats. In addition, due to the climate in Australia, it is possible to rear crocodiles to harvest size under controlled environmental conditions almost anywhere on the continent.
Crocodiles are extremely energy efficient. They are cold-blooded and depend on external heat sources to regulate their body temperature, therefore they do not have to heat themselves using energy fueled by food as humans and other mammals do, therefore, they only need to eat once a week to maintain their energy levels. In the wild, crocodiles eat fish, birds, mammals and occasionally smaller crocodiles; however, when grown in captivity, they are fed poultry, fish, pig and beef. Work is...
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