Flushing Danger: The Mugger Rescue!

April 24, 2023 | By Mansi Sharma
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The Mugger or Marsh crocodile (Crocodylus palustris) has been considered one of the most intelligent predators in the freshwater ecosystem. They typically live in freshwater habitats such as lakes, rivers, hill streams, and ponds. However, due to increased human intervention in their natural habitat, these crocodiles have had to move to other man-made reservoirs to find suitable habitats. Thus, a significant difficulty lies in avoiding confrontations between crocodiles and locals residing near those water bodies. 

In a rare case, this Mugger crocodile was found in the bathroom of a house in Firozabad, Uttar Pradesh. [Photo (C) Wildlife SOS/Shresatha Pachori]

Following leads, one such incident occurred recently in Nagla Pasi village in the Firozabad district of Uttar Pradesh. Last week, residents here were taken aback by the unexpected arrival of a large reptilian guest. A Mugger crocodile, measuring up to 7 feet long, had made its way into a toilet of their building. It only took one sight of the crocodile to create a state of panic and chaos throughout the building. Fearing for their safety, the occupants barricaded the crocodile in the bathroom and immediately raised an alarm. The forest department dispatched their team and contacted the Wildlife SOS Rapid Response Unit in Agra on their emergency helpline (+91-9917109666) for assistance in conducting the rescue operation.

Wildlife SOS helplines run 24×7 in Delhi-NCR, Agra, Vadodara, and Jammu & Kashmir. [Photo (C) Wildlife SOS/Shresatha Pachori]

A four-member team was immediately dispatched to the location to assist the forest department.   Meanwhile, a huge crowd gathered around the building, all eager to get a glimpse of the massive crocodile. Equipped with the necessary rescue equipment, the team carried out a gruelling two-hour-long operation. Eventually, the crocodile was lured into a baited trap cage and was extracted from the toilet. Upon enquiring with the villagers, it was discovered that the crocodile had wandered out of a nearby pond. The crocodile was later released in a more suitable natural habitat.

The Mugger crocodile was released into the nearby pond. [Photo (C) Wildlife SOS/ Shresatha Pachori]

Compared to other crocodilian species, the Mugger crocodile is relatively calmer. However, our rescue team always makes sure that all precautionary measures are taken during the rescue to avoid any unexpected events. 

Our heartfelt gratitude goes out to the Jasrana Forest Division for their invaluable assistance in this nail-biting rescue operation, as we were able to promptly reach the location and prevent any untoward incident. We also deeply appreciate the villagers’ vigilance in promptly notifying the forest department about the crocodile intrusion. 

Over the years, Wildlife SOS has rescued several crocodiles from conflict in villages around Uttar Pradesh, the outskirts of Delhi NCR, and Gujarat. The team also conducts regular awareness workshops on mitigation techniques to ensure people take correct safety measures during such encounters. We always advise people to steer clear of riverbanks during the crocodiles’ nesting season. Our primary objective is to reduce conflict situations by educating people on the reasons behind crocodile intrusion into human habitats and fostering an understanding of their behaviour.

To learn more about our reptile rescue operations, join our Facebook group Wildlife SOS Reptiles, or become a monthly donor for Wildlife SOS and support our life-saving work.

Wildlife SOS 24×7 Rescue Helpline numbers: 

Delhi NCR – +91 9871963535

Agra – +91 9917109666

Vadodara – +91 9825011117

Jammu & Kashmir – +91 7006692300, +91 9419778280

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Hotline Number | हॉटलाइन नंबर

Delhi NCT Region +91-9871963535
Agra Region (UP) +91-9917109666
Vadodra Region +91-9825011117
J&K Region +91 7006692300
+91 9419778280