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Jailbreak crocodiles recaptured in south China
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The last runaway crocodile was recaptured by researcher Liu longzhang (R) and his coworkers Friday, September 26, 2008, in a park in Zhuhai city, South China's Guangdong Province. Many crocodiles escaped after heavy rain submerged boundaries in a crocodile research center. This was due to Typhoon Hagupit landing in south China on September 24. [ycwb.com]

More than a dozen crocodiles escaped from their enclosures in Guangdong Province after Typhoon Hagupit raised water levels in south China on September 24.

The Zhuhai city park contains a crocodile research and reproduction center. Two zones that house Yangtze crocodiles and the more dangerous estuarine crocodiles, were submerged allowing several to escape.

Some were found at the center's front gate by workers on duty earlier that day.

Liu Longzhang, nicknamed the "father of crocodiles" is a researcher with 20 years of experience at the center. His close relationship with the crocs helped as he called the more tamed escapees back to their enclosures.

People appeared stunned at Liu's "crocodile language" but he played down the magic by saying it was a "conditioned reflex." Since all the crocodiles were artificially hatched, they had become used to him.

Mr Liu, with the support of others, caught many crocodiles by using ropes to fasten their jaws shut. Local authorities had been permitted to shoot if necessary in order to protect their citizens.

The last one, an estuarine crocodile, was found in a lake of the park in the morning of September 26, Guangzhou-based Da Yang Evening News reports.

A total of 16 crocodiles were captured alive and only one was shot dead.

(CRI September 29, 2008)


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