Crocodiles in ‘coffin-sized’ pens
Saturday, 28 April 2012 00:01   

Crocodiles in ‘coffin-sized’ pens

Unable to turn their bodies or leave the water, hundreds of crocodiles on a farm in northern KwaZulu-Natal are waiting for slaughter in cruel conditions, according to the SPCA, which brought criminal charges against a Pongola farming operation yesterday.

SPCA national council inspector Nazareth Appalsamy said charges of animal cruelty had been laid against Coen Labuschagne, who runs Metcroc Boerdery, as he had contravened both the SA National Standard of Crocodiles in Captivity Act and the National Animal Protection Act.

Appalsamy said at least 200 crocodiles were incarcerated in concrete pits each no more than 1.8m wide, less than 2m long, without protection from the sun, and in water less than 300mm deep.

“Some of the crocodiles themselves are more than 2m in length and so their tails are bent in the enclosure, or their heads have to be permanently at an angle. They basically cannot lie or rest straight.

“There is no shade cloth or shelter or any heating requirements, which would be necessary depending on the season.”

Article Continues: IOL