Spain: police search river after sightings of Nile crocodile

Spain: police search river after sightings of Nile crocodile
Spain: police search river after sightings of Nile crocodile

A LARGE crocodile has been spotted in a river in Spain, sparking an urgent police hunt.

Sources from the Emergency Service 112 and the municipal police told Efe that various people claimed to have seen the reptile over the last couple of days.

The first sighting was around 12 noon on Friday, June 5, when the Local Police of Simancas received a warning a crocodile was cruising the river in the Pesqueruela area.

And on Saturday, another member of the public contacted the Local Police to report a similar sighting.

Ten people have become involved in trying to locate and capture the crocodile, and areas of the river have been cordoned off to prevent public access.

But today, a professional tracker from Chelonia Association for Conservation, Research and Planning of Natural Resources, Fernando Gómez, assured that tracks found on the banks of Pesqueruela, where the Duero and Pisuerga rivers meet, “do not correspond, in any case, to a large reptile.”

He said that the evidence observed so far, footprints and remains of a semi-devoured fish, “do not correspond with the trail that a large reptile would leave.”

But in a statement obtained by Efe and El Norte de Castilla, he added “that does not mean it is not there.”

When asked if it could be a Nile crocodile, the expert said that “the conditions in this area are not ideal” for a reptile of that kind.

However, he pointed out crocodiles adapt, they have been on the land for millions of years, and “can endure without eating, they are elusive and they can move and hide under water.”

With regards to the remains of the fish found, Gómez said it is more likely to have been an otter which ate it, while “the footprints would correspond to human tracks and the opening of vegetation is likely to have been fishermen.”


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