Saturday, August 5, 2017

American Crocodile

Our second stop on 2 July during our Costa Rica dragonfly tour was one I shall not soon forget. The highway (Route 34) crosses the Rio Tarcoles. The bridge is two-laned, with heavy traffic. Sidewalks, basically only wide enough for one person, run on both sides of the bridge. Tourist activity abounds. To think that this experience was free of charge! We parked and walked across where we rejoined our bus. We wondered what attracts the crocodiles. Undoubtedly they are fed. Pedestrian fatalities? Dragonfly hunters who venture down the river banks? We were scolded by tourist police when we tried to search for dragonflies.

American Crocodiles have “catholic diets” (Scientific American Blogs). They are tolerant of salt water, which has allowed them to inhabit many areas of the Caribbean. They range from northern South America up both coasts of Central America and Mexico. They are also found in Florida. The bump on their slender snout in front of their eyes is distinctive. Modern crocodiles grow up to 4 meters in length. Old records exist of animals almost twice that long.

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