‘Wandering’ croc could have been bested by larger rival, says croc farm owner

Firemen prepare to untie the crocodile prior to releasing the reptile into the Pandaruan River on Sunday.

MIRI: There are a few possibilities behind the origin of Limbang’s ‘wandering’ crocodile on Sunday, according to a local crocodile farm owner.

Kapitan Chai Kuen Ming, whose farm is located in Kuala Baram, said the reptile would not simply wander into human habitat unless it was forced out of its original territory.

“There are two possibilities: one is that a larger, stronger rival has taken over the territory; the other is a lack of food which forced it to venture into human habitat,” Chai told The Borneo Post yesterday.

He said through his experience observing the reptiles, the ‘wandering’ croc may have been trying to move to a different territory after being bested by a contender when it was spotted on Sunday.

“He may have escaped from his territory nearby, either upstream or downstream of Limbang River, after being beaten by another bigger crocodile.

“At the same time, it is also possible that the reptile might have been hungry and was searching for food due to insufficient fish in the river,” he added.

Chai, who rears saltwater crocodiles for skin and meat at his farm, said it was also entirely possible, based on photos of the captured croc, that the reptile did not originate from the wild but ‘had been kept by someone’ and had broken loose.

The crocodile is released into the Pandaruan River.

Presently, he has over 1,000 saltwater crocodiles at his farm, which is frequented by quite a number of visitors and tourists on weekends and holidays.

Meanwhile, Limbang fire station chief Tawang Lingem, when contacted yesterday, confirmed that the 16-foot

croc was released into the Pandaruan River around 1.15pm the same day it was caught.

He said the one-tonne reptile was transported in a lorry and released into the river by firemen and Sarawak Forestry Corporation (SFC) personnel.

SFC deputy general manager (Protected Areas and Biodiversity Conservation Division) Oswald Braken Tisen said the captured croc was released in the Pandaruan River away from human population.

“SFC will continue to monitor the crocodile from time to time to see if it adjusts to its new environment, and if the reptile is found to be unable to adjust or falls sick, we will move it elsewhere where it can survive,” he said.

Source: http://www.theborneopost.com/2017/09/05/wandering-croc-could-have-been-bested-by-larger-rival-says-croc-farm-owner/