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Philippines’ New Largest Crocodile Alive in Captivity, Found in Tawi-Tawi

Margaret Tionquiao

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  • An 18-feet long Indo-Pacific crocodile has been captured on the shores of Taytay Beach, Simunul, Tawi-Tawi.
  • This newly captured croc is believed to be the longest live crocodile in captivity.
  • In the past, the record for the longest live crocodile in captivity was held by Papa Bulls who was also caught on the shores of Simunul while “searching for food.”
  • Both crocodiles are shorter than the now dead Lolong, the Guinness World Record holder of the world’s longest crocodile in captivity.

The capture of yet another large Indo-Pacific crocodile or saltwater crocodile (Crocodylus porosus) by the beach of an island town in Tawi-Tawi created a disturbance in and out of social media last Wednesday, October 14.

The crocodile is believed to be approximately 18-feet long. It was found and captured on Taytay Beach in the coastal area of Simunul. It is now believed to be the biggest in captivity in the Philippines. Though still unofficial, this new croc beats the current title holder, which measured 16 feet at the time of capture.

Newly captured crocodile found on Taytay Beach, Simunul, Tawi-tawi
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However, this croc is still shorter than Lolong (died on February 10, 2013). Lolong is a 20-feet 3-inches saltwater crocodile who holds the Guinness World Record for the largest saltwater crocodile in captivity.  

Meet Lolong, the Guinness World Record holder for the largest saltwater crocodile even after he died.
lolong-worlds-largest-crocodile

Facebook user Grace Nuka first posted photos of the crocodile being caught and loaded into a truck. 

croc-in-twi-tawi
largest-crocodile-captured-in-twi-tawi

In another post, a video was shared by Facebook user Krystian Amri Mufti. In the video, the croc was atop a small truck being driven around town for the residents to see.

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According to local reports, the crocodile has been turned over to the tourism office of Simunul. It was reportedly brought in the same swampy mangrove area that houses Papa Bulls.

Papa Bulls (16.5 ft long upon capture) is the largest live saltwater crocodile in captivity on record today
papa-bulls-crocodile-in-simunul

This is not the first time that a crocodile was captured in Simunul. In September 2017, Papa Bulls was also caught after wandering to the shores of Simunul during a “food search.” 

Even in history, crocodiles are abundant in the swamps of Simunul even during the time of the Sultanate.

The natives of Simunul even have stories about crocodiles. One of the most popular stories was the one from 1968. It was about a large python that fought with a saltwater crocodile, leaving them both dead. 

There’s also the play written by the playwright Sharifa Pearlsia Ali-Dans Kissa about Kissa kan Napsa Lagayan. Napsa Lagayan was kidnapped by the Sultan of Sulu. In the story, her husband came home from work and was was told that she was eaten by a crocodile. Tuan Amilhamja, Napsa Lagaya’s husband, upon finding out what happened to his wife, declared, “Sapanjang sin ummul ko, In Tamba Kadkarun ku, In Buaya Banta ku”. (As long as I live, the crocodile is my enemy). 

This matches some netizens’ thoughts about crooked politicians shared on the comment section of the post.

Meanwhile, other netizens complained about the croc’s handling, saying that the crocodile may be unnecessarily stressed with the capture process.

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