The 'Madras Crocodile Bank' situated on the East Coast Road, enroute to Mahabaliburam, is a non government environmental organisation, started in the year 1976 by Rom Whitaker. It is a sanctuary for different species of crocodiles and the first crocodile breeding centre to be established in asia. The centre has a huge number of crocodiles, some turtles and snakes, a hard task taken with passion, to conserve the endangered reptiles, that are on the verge of extinction.
The Irula tribe who once hunted snakes for a living and have a good knowledge about snakes , have now been employed by the government to catch the snakes to breed and extract venom which is used to make anti-dote. The venom extraction is demonstrated to the public in the centre, established by the government, which is also situated in the Crocodile Bank.
The biggest salt water crocodile named Jaws III, the main attraction in the centre, failed to show its face and stayed immersed in the water. Crocodiles, Gharials, Alligators, see them basking in the sun like rocks or if you are at the feeding time, then be lucky to watch this exciting moment, when all the crocodiles from the land and from water emerge and move towards the feeding place to get their first catch. Addition of a green anaconda is on the cards, another bold attempt by the centre, to attract more visitors.
Aldabra Giant Tortoise - native of aldabra atoll
Under water Gharial in a see through glass window
Happy outside the bars
Snakes in pots
Out comes the cobra
'Jaws III' (?) Can’t even spot its teeth