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World's largest crocodile in captivity crowned in Philippines

posted 4 Jul 2012, 05:56 by Mpelembe   [ updated 4 Jul 2012, 05:56 ]

A saltwater crocodile weighing more than one tonne is declared the world's largest by Guinness.

BUNAWAN, AGUSAN DEL SUR PROVINCE, PHILIPPINES (JULY 3, 2012)  (ABS-CBN) - A saltwater crocodile weighing more than a tonne has been declared the largest crocodile in captivity by the Guinness Book of World Records.

The animal, nicknamed Lolong, was blamed for the death of a girl and a fisherman in the town of Bunawan, and was captured last September after a three-week-long hunt.

Lolong was measured at 6.17m (20 feet), and weighs 1,075 kilograms (2259 lbs), and was said to be in healthy condition. It eats up to 10 kg (22 lbs) of meat a week, a local official said.

The town mayor, Edwin Elorde, was pleased with the Guinness record announcement.

"We are happier, and we appreciate Lolong more, now that he's become more famous. We treasure him even more," Elorde said.

The giant croc has become a tourist attraction in the sleepy town of Bunawan, where an ecotourism park was built around the reptile's enclosure.

"I got curious, because it's so big," local tourist Mangellanie Tiempo said.

An official said hundreds of people visited the park each day last summer, and the town has generated around 2.5 million pesos (60,000 US dollars) from ticket sales.