Natural or man-made, take a refreshing dip in Watery Wednesday.
October 14, 2009
Can you see it?
The Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis) is a relatively small freshwater crocodile found only in the Philippines. It doesn't grow more than 3 meters (about 10 feet) in length and is found mostly in the northern part of the country. In fact, it is named after the island of Mindoro in Luzon. Unfortunately, it is in the critically endangered list of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), originally because of commercial exploitation but now because of human encroachment on its preferred habitats and also because of bad fishing methods. As of August 2009, the IUCN reports that the total population surviving in the wild is estimated at only 100 mature individuals. Thankfully, several conservation societies have created captive breeding and releasing programs for it. Together with awareness and education campaigns for local communities, the programs might just succeed in bringing it back to healthy population levels. The Manila Ocean Park has several Philippine crocodiles in its Agos (Flow) section, where I (barely) saw this one enjoying a quiet moment under the rainforest waterfall.