African Reptiles, African Wildlife, Wildlife
Comments 7

Crocodile – Economy of Scales

Nile Crocodile iSimangaliso Wetland Park KwaZulu Natal South Africa

South Africa’s iSimangaliso Wetland Park is one of our favourite destinations. This unique estuarine park consists of over 300,000 hectares of lakes, swamp forests, giant sand dunes and one of the most beautiful coastlines in Southern Africa. And of course there is an abundance of wildlife, an ever important asset for the local tourism industry with its headquarters based in the pleasant and laid back town of St. Lucia. In fact, (eco)tourism has become such an important economic driver that the park has seen major changes over the past 15 years with new sections created, the rehabilitation of former agricultural land and the reintroduction of thousands of animals including elephants, rhinos and lions – notably in the uMkhuze part of iSimangaliso.

Not less spectacular are the hippos and crocodiles that live in the park’s waterways – with around 1,200 crocodiles iSimangaliso holds one of South Africa’s most important wild crocodiles populations. Apart from being important predators in a complex ecosystem crocodiles are also of vital importance for the local economy – boat cruises on the estuary depart daily with visitors that like to see those ancient reptiles. The individual that we spotted stood out as it obviously looked at us from under its heavy armour while displaying a kind of derogatory smile at the same time. For this black and white challenge I cropped the photo to highlight the eyes, mouth and textural scales of this fearsome animal.

As part of the 5 days Black-and-White Challenge I would like to invite one of my older and most loyal friends in the blogosphere to join in the monochrome fun. Photoshopping is a website that highlights the beauty of one of our favourite countries on the African continent: Morocco. We’ve always enjoyed the beautiful photos and hope you join in.


  1. Magnificent Maurice! The textures are so vivid, seems one will be able to reach out and “feel” the crocodile’s skin.

    • Thank you Dries! Its skin is textural indeed and will be softer than many expect. Still, this croc was far bigger than me – I’d be a goner if I’d reached out…

  2. Girl Gone Expat says

    Great picture – the details and structure of the skin is just amazing. Makes me wonder how it would feel like touching it, not that I would though!…Would like to keep my hand:)

    • Thank you Inger; those animals have beautiful skins indeed – unfortunately that also meant their near extinction in our own Northern Territory in the mid 1970’s. It’s tempting to touch them indeed although I’m afraid you could lose more than just your hand!

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