The Phoenix Herpetological Society has welcomed a new species of crocodile to its reptile sanctuary, giving it the second-largest collection of crocodilians in the U.S.
Visitors to the nationally recognized sanctuary, located in Scottsdale, can now see 21 of the world’s 24 species of crocodilians, which include crocodiles, alligators and caimans.
The new addition is a freshwater crocodile female that is 3.5 feet long and between 8 and 9 years old. She came to PHS from a Texas zoo on a breeding loan. PHS is working to obtain a male freshwater croc to mate with her.
“PHS now has the second largest Crocodilian collection in the United States,” says Russ Johnson, president of the nonprofit organization.
“When our freshwater croc is not participating in the breeding program, she will be utilized for education, especially during open house events and facility tours of the PHS sanctuary. ”
Freshwater Crocodile Facts
Freshwater crocs (or “freshies”) are native to Australia and are primarily found in freshwater lakes, rivers and wetlands. These crocs are gray or olive-brown with darker mottling or bands on the upper body, tail and sometimes on the snout.
In the past, the species was at risk of extinction because crocs were hunted for their skins. The species has made a comeback due to conservation.
Equally fast on land or water, freshwater crocodiles may gallop at speeds of up to 18 mph. Freshwater crocodiles have strong legs, clawed webbed feet and powerful tails.
Although generally not dangerous to humans, they can inflict serious injury with their sharp teeth.
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