Guest Author - Jeanne Egbosiuba Ukwendu
Name: Nile Crocodile
Scientific Name: Crocodylus niloticus
African Names: Mamba (Swahili), Garwe (Shona), Ngwenya (Ndebele), Olom (Nubian dialect)
Length: The average length is roughly 16 feet but can be up to 20 feet long.
Average Adult Weight: Nile Crocodiles generally weigh around 500 pounds. Some crocodiles weighing up to 1,650 pounds have been found.
Life Span: 45 years in the wild, 80 in captivity.
Description: The Nile Crocodile's snout is long and broad. It's nostrils can close underwater. The eyes, ears, and nostrils are on the top of the head, which lets the crocodile to be completely underwater and still see, smell, and hear. The Nile Crocodile's teeth are long and conical. Nile crocodiles have sixty-six teeth.
The Nile crocodile has short, squat legs ending in sharp claws.
Their tail is very long.
Their skin is rough, scaly, and waterproof preventing dehydration. The back and tail are covered in rows of knobs.
Habitat: Nile Crocodiles can be found in rivers, lakes, marshes, and dams. In Madagascar, they can be found in caves. Sometimes, they even be found in the ocean.
Countries found in: Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe
Babies: Nile Crocodiles become sexually mature around ten years of age. Once a year, usually in July, the female will lay between 30 and 80 eggs near water's the edge. The eggs hatch in two to three months. As the eggs are hatching, the male and female crocodiles roll the eggs around in their mouth the assist the new born crocodiles.
Food: Nile Crocodiles eat mostly fish. They will also eat almost anything that happens to cross its path: zebras, small hippos, porcupines, birds, baby elephants, and other crocodiles. It will also scavenge carrion and can eat up to half its body weight in one feeding.
Group Name: A bask, congregation, float, nest of crocodiles.
Conservation Status: Least Concern
Predators: No known natural predators.
Interesting Facts: One of three existing species of African crocodiles.
Archeologists have found mummified crocodiles and crocodile eggs in Egyptian tombs.
The Nile Crocodile has a reputation of being a man-eater. There are estimates that Nile Crocodiles kill up to 200 people a year in Africa.