Gharial: Crocodilian Nearly Extinct

A little background info on Gharials:

  • Have a broad, long, and muscular body
  • An extraordinarily narrow snout
  • Gharial is the second longest species of crocodilian in the world (second only to the Saltwater Crocodile)
  • Gharials are mainly piscavores: fish eaters
  • As adults, male gharials may reach up to 20 feet in length
  • Females rarely exceed 15 feet
  • Gharials are not man-eaters

Gharials are in trouble, with an estimated 650 adults left in the wild. They are dying due to habitat loss, water pollution, and lack of prey (humans are overfishing).

With their extremely thin snouts, gharials were build to hunt, catch and eat fish and small aquatic animals; not larger prey. Their snout is thin, and can flash through the water at lightning speed, to snag a fish. Gharials were not designed to catch and kill large prey, and thus are of no threat to humans.

Gharials are extremely important to the ecosystem in its home regions (India, Pakistan, Bangledesh, Bhutan, Nepal, Myanmar); they help to keep many aquatic populations (especially fish, crustaceans, and small amphibians) under control.

We are losing gharials at a very fast rate - their population has decreased by nearly 99% within the last 100 years. Gharials have lost a lot of habitat range for two main reasons:

  1. Sand mining
  2. Bodies of water being drained to create space for farmlands

Many gharials have also been found with discarded jewlery and other trash in their digestive systems. The waters within the range of the gharial are very polluted in general, between garbage and oil (to the point where rivers have CAUGHT FIRE because of how oily they were).

All to say, many gharials are either suffocating under the mass of pollution, drying up because their homes were drained, or BURNING up in a RIVER that CAUGHT FIRE.

It was man-kind that got these incredible animals into this mess, hence it is our job to save them.

(You will see where I am going with this in a second) All water is connected - therefore, trash improperly discarded in one country can end up across the world.

Saving the gharials starts on an individual level - no matter where YOU live in the world, dispose of trash, and be a good samaritan; if you see trash in the wilderness (or anywhere it shouldn't be), just dispose of it properly. Reduce your use of plastic and anything that needs to be trashed. Turn organic ingredients into compost insted of throwing it in the garbage. Use the hand dryer instead of using paper towels.

Gharials are incredible, important and very docile animals, and we ought to do everything in our power to save them. If everyone (individually) makes the decision to clean up after him or herself, the world, as a whole, will become a cleaner place; and then, we will have taken a huge, crucial, step towards saving the Gharials.

הועלה ב-אוקטובר 31, 2021 02:42 לפנה"צ על ידי mr_reptile mr_reptile


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