Nile Crocodile

Africa's largest crocodilian

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Crocodile have no natural predators. Outside water, crocodiles can meet competition from other dominant savannah predators, notably lions and leopards. Life expectancy is 45 years in the wild. They live in lakes, rivers, freshwater swamps and brackish water, in deep pools and on sand banks with suitable nesting spots and a sufficient food supply. The Nile crocodile is the most common crocodilian found in Africa today. Up to 70% of the adult diet is fish. Other prey items may inclu, zzebras, porcupines, pangolins, and migratingwildebeest. Although it has a viscous reputation the Nile crocodile is actually a very caring parent. Eggs are buried under soft sand with both the male and female guarding them until they hatch. Females will respond to the sound of calling hatchlings, helping them to water by digging up the sand and carrying them in her mouth. For crocodiles the mating season usually will begin in August or September. Females are ready to mate when they are about 10 years of age. Males are ready to mate around 16 years of age. The Nile crocodile ranges far beyond the rain forests to inhabit most of the continent’s rivers and lakes. It is famous for feeding on large mammals, and in the savannah areas of Africa, crocodiles often lurk in rivers near places where migrating zebras, wildebeests and other animals are in the habit of crossing. The big herds pay a toll in lives for the privilege of reaching the opposite shore.