Farmer hopes to recover more crocodiles

Jan. 29, 2013 at 12:35 AM

POLOKWANE, South Africa, Jan. 29 (UPI) -- A crocodile farmer on the Limpopo River in South Africa recovered more than 2,000 of the 15,000 animals that escaped in flooding, his son-in-law said Monday.

Zane Langman said his father-in-law, Johan Boshoff, is waiting for recapture permits, The New Age reported. Boshoff owns the Rakwena Crocodile Farm in Limpopo province near the border with Botswana.

Langman warned local residents to be careful of the thousands of crocodiles still on the loose, because the animals are habituated to people.

"We appeal to local people who frequent the Limpopo River for fishing and washing to refrain from carrying basins because the reptiles are very familiar with those since that's what we use to feed them," he said.

"The moment they see a person carrying such a movable basin they rush out to that person and they can be dangerous."

The crocodiles escaped when Boshoff opened a pond to prevent his entire property from being flooded by the Limpopo. Anton Lotter, a crocodile expert, told the newspaper rounding up the missing animals might take as long as six months.

The Rakwena farm raises crocodiles and sells their skins to China and other countries.

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