News Column

Lolong, Largest Crocodile Dies in Philippines

February 11, 2013

World's largest crocodile dies in S. Philippines. A giant saltwater crocodile, the longest on earth, has died while in captivity in southern Philippines.

The 6.12-meter reptile, nicknamed "Lolong", died at its pen in Bunawan town, in Mindanao's Agusan del Sur province shortly after 8 p.m. on Sunday, Edwin Elorde, the town mayor said.

"(Lolong's death) was very unfortunate," Santiago Cane, vice governor for Agusan del Sur province told Xinhua in a text message on Monday.

Elorde said in a phone interview that the reptile showed unusual sluggish activity hours before its demise, prompting local authorities to shut down an inland lagoon-turned resort at the upland village of Consuelo where Lolong was kept, from public.

The local government has been cashing in on the reptile as a tourism attraction in this sleepy town of more than 20,000 since the beast was captured in 2011.

"He has stopped eating his usual diet since last month. Actually, we've noticed unusual changes in the animal's behavior right after last December's typhoon," Elorde said, referring to last year's storm that killed more than a thousand people in the region. "His belly had ballooned."

Lolong was captured in 2011 in the Agusan Marsh. Guinness World Records declared it last year as the world's largest saltwater crocodile in captivity in the world.

Source: Copyright Xinhua News Agency - CEIS 2013

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