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Chennai Crocodile Bank protects and conserves the endangered crocodiles and reptiles.

Chennai Crocodile Bank

Crocodile Bank near Chennai42 km from the Chennai city, Madras/Chennai Crocodile Bank was founded with an aim to protect and conserve the endangered crocodiles and reptiles. Today, it houses crocodiles that are kept in their natural surroundings and the pools. The lush green tropical forests provide shade to the thousands of crocodilians basking around the shores of the water with jaws wide open. Also known as Chennai Crocodile Bank, this crocodile conservation centre is the largest croc-breeding site in India. The visit to the place gives a feeling of being one with the aqua world with the faint smell of fish and moss in the air and dampness of the place. The splashing of waters as the crocodiles jumps in or feeding crabs to them is a scene that looks creepy. Enclosed in pens or the Marsh or Mugger breeding pit, these long-jawed, sharp-teethed creatures look as formidable as ever and reminds one of the 'Jurassic Park', the recreation of the age of reptiles.

Crocodile Bank and Breeding Centre was started in 1976 with just twenty-five reptiles and they have eagerly multiplied to about 7,000 inmates, especially Muggers. At that time, this creature was on the brink of extinction because of its valuable hide. The Bank houses about seven crocodilian species out of the 25 found in world-over, out of which, three are exclusively Indian including the 3.6 m long Marsh or Mugger, the 4 to 5 m long Gharials (the crocodile with the longest jaw and pot-like snout; and 8 m long Saltwater crocodiles, the largest of all reptiles. The last of all weighs about 900 kg and are found in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, the Sunderbans in West Bengal and in coastal Orissa. The difference between species is in the arrangement of the jaws and head bones. The Crocodile Bank also conducts research work on these crocodiles, turtles and monitor lizards.

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