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Ugandan Conservationists Saddened As 62-year-old Crocodile Passes; 'The Man Eater' Ate Over 80 Fishermen

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MPIGI, Uganda -- Wildlife conservatives were saddened when one of the oldest crocodiles in the country was found dead on Friday at Buwama Crocodile Farm on Masaka Road in Mpigi district.

The 62-year-old crocodile, also called “the man eater,’’ was believed to have mauled more than 80 fishermen in Bugiri district since 1983.

The Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) officials, assisted by fishermen, captured it from Lugaga swamp in Bugiri in March 2005 and relocated it to Buwama.

Weighing one tonne at the time of it was captured, it had remained elusive to armed squads of vermin control officials.

Although, the fishermen wanted it killed to avenge the death of their colleagues, UWA and the authorities at the Buwama farm on the shores of Lake Victoria gave it another chance to life.

“It was in a secure place and its death is something I did not expect,’’ said an UWA official who preferred anonymity.

“It is also unfortunate because I do not want any crocodile to die.” “We are sad over the death of the crocodile,’’ said Alex Mutamba, a manager at the farm.

“It is also bad that it mauled people before it was brought here, but all this occurred because its territory was under invasion.’’

The people had invaded the crocodile’s territory by engaging in over fishing, something that deprived the crocodile of its source of food, according to the wildlife authority sources.

Mutamba added that the crocodile was popular with tourists from Kampala and Masaka.

Makerere University pathologists conducted a postmortem, but results have not been released. Sources believe the cause of death was stress-related. The crocodile was buried on Saturday.


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Reader Comments

10 people have commented so far. cloud add your comment

Amazing and very inspirational that these people had enough respect for a wild animal to move it to a new habitat where it was safe and not a threat to humans. I don't understand this whole idea that once an animal attacks a human it gets a "taste" for killing people. It simply isn't true, especially of large reptiles.
   comment# 1   - Jason · Louisville · Oct 14, 2007 @ 5:45pm

Ya, it's a time before I look at this and I realize it should of been kill when it was caught and I wish I wrote sooner.
   comment# 2   - Jason · Louisville · Nov 30, 2007 @ 7:57pm

Crocodile is not man eater species but some times mankind made mistake with them and so they suffered by attacking the crocodile.
   comment# 3   - Manish · Anand, India · Mar 27, 2008 @ 4:21am

In a time when people kill animals just for the sake of killing, It is refrehing to know that a small country like Uganda, takes the time, energy and resources to save a very dangerous animal from humans, they should be very proud of the sacrifices they have taken
   comment# 4   - James · Winnipeg Canada · Jul 18, 2008 @ 6:34am

I wonder if this croc died because it was too old to catch able prey and that is why it developed an affinity for humans in the first place.
   comment# 5   - dru · Orange County, CA · Sep 9, 2008 @ 1:32pm

i think its in he's nature to kill and eat,but its also a danger to locals or the people that spend every day by the river
   comment# 6   - felicia hepburn · SouthAfrica · Nov 18, 2008 @ 3:37am

large predators are not human eaters by nature.humans are the invaders and destroyers.wake up.allnature needs a chance and our help.
   comment# 7   - patrick williams · costa rica · Mar 5, 2009 @ 6:33pm

I think it is bad to kill wild animals since they are the tourist attraction in uganda Therefore my advice to people is to stop killing them.
   comment# 9   - namirembe otim sarah. · uganda · Nov 12, 2010 @ 2:48am

If we give the crocodiles their freedom by not encroaching on their territory, they will give us ours by not eating us!!!
   comment# 9   - Angella · Entebbe,Uganda · Feb 19, 2011 @ 3:56am

I personally knew that crocodile. It was really bad news to hear its death.
   comment# 10   - Kalema Thomas · Uganda · Oct 31, 2011 @ 11:47am
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