A young Saltwater/Estuarine Crocodile (Crocodylus porosus) was caught by a fisherman while crab hunting at Purok 11, Kawas, Alabel Sarangani at 9 PM last night, September 21, 2014.

Source: Jopy Caneda on Sarangani Wildlife Protection and Rescue Team Network Facebook

Specimens of various reptiles found in Singapore: Estuarine Crocodile (Crocodylus porosus), Malayan Forest Softshell Turtle (Dogania subplana), King Cobra (Ophiophagus hannah) & Green Crested Lizard (Bronchocela cristatella) @ VivoCity

Day 1 of the Festival of Biodiversity 2014 has come to an end, but you can still visit VivoCity tomorrow to learn more about Singapore’s wildlife and wild places!

Dead crocs will undergo autopsies: PUB

By Audrey Tan, 25th June 2014;

The authorities have come up with fresh procedures to deal with dead crocodiles, after questions were raised over the handling of the carcass of a crocodile nicknamed Barney.

National water agency PUB and the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) have reviewed the procedures, PUB told The Straits Times yesterday.

“In the event that any dead crocodiles are found, PUB will send the carcass to AVA for an autopsy to determine the cause of death,” a spokesman added.

Observers had voiced doubts about how the authorities had not done an autopsy to find out the cause of death of Barney, a 400kg Saltwater Crocodile (Crocodylus porosus) found dead at Kranji Reservoir on April 18.

The 3.6m-long reptile was found dead with a metal rod in its eye and a large fishing hook lodged in its mouth. PUB said yesterday that it was investigating it as a case of poaching but has yet to find the culprits.

The carcass of Barney, believed to be one of the largest wild specimens here, had been disposed of at a nearby farm.

Long Kuan Hung Crocodile Farm, the only one here, had said it did not receive the carcass.

Yesterday, observers like Strix Wildlife Consultancy director Subaraj Rajathurai welcomed the revised procedure, calling it a step in the right direction.

But Mr Subaraj, 51, who has more than 30 years’ experience in wildlife work, said the change should be extended: Autopsies should be carried out on all animals without an immediate known cause of death.

“The crocodile was a native, endangered species – it is important to know what caused its death.” he said. “In a nature area such as Kranji Reservoir, which is also a drinking water supply area, it is also important to find out what killed the reptile, as the safety of the public is at stake.”

Dr Edmund Lam, 54, chief executive of a copyright association, also applauded the news, saying he was “happy to hear” it.

He had written in to The Sunday Times Letters page on May 11 after the death of Barney was reported, to ask for clarification on the authorities’ usual procedure when faced with a carcass “of an animal belonging to a significant wildlife species”.

“It’s the right thing to do – a Saltwater Crocodile is rare,” he told The Straits Times yesterday.

Separately, PUB said yesterday that it is carrying out work on the Kranji Reservoir to remove an excessive number of Water Hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes) plants on its surface.

This is to help “maintain a balanced eco-system and a relatively clear water surface”, it said.

“Excessive growth reduces the water surface area for oxygen exchange and this can limit the levels of dissolved oxygen levels in the reservoir.”

It was responding to queries from The Straits Times, after a reader sent the paper photographs of machinery clearing flotsam at the reservoir. It said the growth was due to the quick reproduction of the plants within the reservoir, as well as at the rivers upstream.

Recent storms had washed the plants downstream into it, it said.

During the dry spell in February, it had not been able to “deploy aquatic plant removal machineries into the… upstream areas in Sungei Kangkar and Sungei Tengah as the water depth was too shallow”, said PUB. Works to reduce the aquatic plant population at the reservoir are expected to be completed by mid-July.

Source: The Straits Times (Mirror)

Dead crocs will undergo autopsies: PUB

Mystery deepens as 400kg Kranji crocodile suspected to have been killed by poachers but carcass has disappeared
Croc farm said it did not dispose of body. So, how does one make a 400kg dead reptile disappear?
By Belmont Lay, 19th May 2014;

And so, the mystery deepens.

National water agency PUB has said that poachers could be responsible for killing the 400kg Estuarine Crocodile (Crocodylus porosus) found dead a month ago on April 18 at Kranji Reservoir, The Straits Times reported on May 16, 2014.

The authorities have also revealed that the crocodile, nicknamed Barney, was found with a metal rod in its eye and a large fishing hook lodged in its mouth, in a joint statement by PUB and the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA).

PUB and AVA are currently probing the 3.6m-long crocodile’s death as a case of illegal poaching. The illegal poachers are deemed to be still at large.

Previously, it was reported that the dead crocodile was disposed of at a nearby farm, which led to questions about why it wasn’t preserved.

However, it has been revealed now that Long Kuan Hung Crocodile Farm, the only crocodile farm in Singapore, did not receive the carcass.

After the original news broke on May 4, 2014 about the dead crocodile, a personnel from Long Kuan Hung Crocodile Farm went around social media leaving messages denying the farm had received any carcass:

It is not known if the carcass was disposed of at another farm, if it wasn’t brought to the crocodile farm, or if the carcass has gone missing altogether and its status is currently unknown.

It is also not known why the poachers did not make off with the crocodile’s carcass after killing it.

The poaching of wild animals carries a maximum fine of $1,000 and forfeiture of the animal.

The public should call AVA’s hotline at 1800-476-1600 to report any suspected poaching activities.

Source: Mothership.SG

The carcass of the 400kg Saltwater Crocodile, which was nicknamed Barney by anglers, being carted off to a farm for disposal. It is not known why the suspected poachers did not escape with their giant catch. – PHOTO: ST READER

Poachers may have killed Barney the croc
400kg croc found at Kranji Reservoir with metal rod in eye, hook in mouth
By Feng Zengkun, 16th May 2014;

The mystery of the 400kg Saltwater Crocodile (Crocodylus porosus) found dead at Kranji Reservoir about a month ago may have been solved, at least partially.

Poachers could be to blame, and they are at large, said national water agency PUB.

The reptile, believed to be one of the largest wild specimens here, was found dead with a metal rod in its eye and a large fishing hook lodged in its mouth, according to the agency’s authorised crocodile handler.

It is not known why the illegal hunters did not make off with their giant catch.

“PUB has been investigating this as a case of poaching but has yet to be able to identify the culprits,” it said in a joint statement with the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) yesterday.

The 3.6m-long Saltwater Crocodile, nicknamed Barney by anglers, was found dead on April 18.

Its body was disposed of at a nearby farm. Long Kuan Hung Crocodile Farm, the only crocodile farm here, said it did not receive the carcass.

A handful of wild crocodiles have been found living in the waters around Singapore’s north-western coastline in recent years.

PUB said there has been a history of crocodile sightings at the Kranji Reservoir area.

Since 1989, PUB has authorised handlers to capture the reptiles alive and hand them to a crocodile farm for safekeeping.

This was done to prevent the crocodiles from endangering workers and visitors to Kranji Reservoir, said PUB’s director of catchment and waterways Tan Nguan Sen. Twelve crocodiles have been caught in the area since then – the last one in 2006.

Following The Sunday Times’ report on Barney’s death and disposal earlier this month, readers and netizens questioned why the crocodile’s cause of death had not been looked into earlier, and why its body had not been preserved and donated to a research institute or a museum, given its size.

Strix Wildlife Consultancy director Subaraj Rajathurai noted that an autopsy was especially important since the body had been found on reservoir grounds that double as a nature area, where poaching could cause serious harm to native wildlife.

“Having an autopsy and making the results public would have prevented wild speculation about the crocodile’s death,” he said.

And in a letter to The Sunday Times Letters page on May 11, Dr Edmund Lam asked for clarification on the authorities’ usual procedure when faced with a carcass “of an animal belonging to a significant wildlife species”.

PUB and AVA stressed that it is dangerous and illegal to hunt crocodiles and other wild animals.

The poaching of wild animals carries a maximum fine of $1,000 and forfeiture of the animal.

The public should call AVA’s hotline at 1800-476-1600 to report any suspected poaching activities.

Source: The Straits Times

PUB probing crocodile’s death

16th May 2014;

PUB, the National Water Agency, and the Agri-Food & Veterinary Authority (AVA) thank Dr Edmund Lam for his letter (“Croc’s death, disposal raise questions”; Sunday).

On April 18, the PUB was informed of a dead Saltwater Crocodile (Crocodylus porosus) at Kranji Reservoir. The authorised crocodile handler found a metal rod had pierced its eye, and a large fishing hook was lodged in its mouth.

The PUB has been investigating this as a case of poaching but has yet to be able to identify the culprits.

We remind the public that it is dangerous and illegal to hunt crocodiles and other wild animals. The poaching of wild animals carries a maximum penalty of a $1,000 fine and forfeiture of the animal. Members of the public should call the AVA’s hotline on 1800-476-1600 to report any suspected poaching activities.

Tan Nguan Sen
Director, Catchment & Waterways Department
PUB, the National Water Agency

Yap Him Hoo (Dr)
Group Director, Quarantine and Inspection Group
Agri-Food & Veterinary Authority

Source: The Straits Times

PUB probing crocodile’s death

Croc’s death, disposal raise questions
11th May 2014;

I am dismayed at the quick disposal of the Saltwater Crocodile’s (Crocodylus porosus) carcass found in Kranji Reservoir (“Bye, bye Barney”; last Sunday).

Crocodiles are a very hardy species – especially one weighing 400kg – with an average life span of about 70 years. It is rare for them to die of disease in a natural habitat.

The circumstances surrounding the death of the crocodile, nicknamed Barney by anglers, surely would have raised alarm and merited further investigation, especially an autopsy to determine the cause of its premature death. It should also trigger a warning of the possibility of some ecosystem anomalies.

What is the existing modus operandi when the carcass of an animal belonging to a significant wildlife species is found? Why wasn’t expert advice sought in Barney’s case? And why wasn’t the carcass considered for preservation? Did the authorities determine whether it was deliberately poisoned? And how was the carcass disposed of?

Can the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority comment?

Edmund Lam (Dr)

Source: The Sunday Times (Mirror)