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Crocodile Farm in Yucatan Nears Economic Viability

Fox News Latino
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July 3, 2016

A commercial crocodile farm in Mexico is striking a balance between business and conservation to help protect the region's endangered Morelet crocodile. The reptile is under threat from habitat loss and poaching but the farm is helping the species thrive in the wild. (

Participants in this year's BBVA Route, a Spanish government youth program aimed at promoting cultural exchanges among Ibero-American countries, visited the Itzamkanac Cooperative, one of Mexico's wildlife management units, or UMAs.

During their visit they learned about the life and habits of these reptiles and even fed and held one of the animals.

None of the 10 colleagues at the cooperative earns a salary for their work feeding, cleaning and caring for the animals and their surroundings or accompanying domestic and international visitors to the crocodile farm.

These workers, who volunteer full-time at the cooperative and help each other out when they run into economic difficulties, hope to recover their investment in time and money when the crocodiles are big enough - around 1.45 meters long and 30-35 centimeters wide - to be harvested.

A crocodile's skin can sell for $500, while its meat can be worth as much as 400-500 pesos ($22-25) per kilo (one animal can weigh as much as five kilos), but no one ventured to guess how much a skeleton might fetch.

The project began four years ago with 30 crocodiles (25 females and five males), but the number of animals has since grown to 360 and 250 more are expected to be born this year.

The goal was to reach 1,000 animals annually within six years.

Read the rest at Fox News Latino

Related: BBVA Expedition Experiences Pristine Nature in Mexico's Yucatan (EFE)

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