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Davao Crocodile Park
Part 9 of a series
After exploring the Malagos Garden Resort, it was definitely time for lunch, late lunch that is! It was already 2pm and my stomach was already grumbling. The drive back to the city is still at least 30 minutes. Oh no! Manong Driver suggested that I try Penong’s. Penong’s Barbeque and Seafood Grill is one of the most popular barbeque houses in Davao City but when we arrived in one of the branches, it was already closed and won’t be reopened until 4pm! For that, Manong Driver brought me to Times Beach! He said that the “Sinigang na Lapu-Lapu” is a must-try and so we did. I also ordered for “Inihaw na Pusit” and “Pork BBQ”. I wasn’t able to take photos though as I was so hungry, obviously. The tinola was the best I’ve tasted so far. I love its sourness and freshness!
Anyway, immediately after the quick lunch, we headed straight to the Davao Crocodile Park. The Davao Crocodile Park is located within Riverfront Corporate City, Davao City. It is more or less 15 minutes from Downtown Davao City and may be reached by private car or taxi via the Carlos P. Garcia Highway (Diversion Road) or Bacaca Road.
Entrance to the park costs P150 each for adults and P75 each for kids 2-12 years old. With that amount, you can already enter the Davao Crocodile Park, the Butterfly House (I decided to skip this as it was already late in the afternoon and I was already able to visit a Butterfly Sanctuary at Malagos Garden Resort) and the Tribu K’Mindanawan Cultural Village (more details in another post), all within the Riverfront Corporate City. Beat that!
The Davao Crocodile Park is home to Pangil, the largest living crocodile in the Philippines!
Saltwater of estuarine crocodile is the largest of all living crocodilians and reptiles. It is found in suitable havitat throughout Southeast Asia, Northern Australia, and the surrounding waters. Saltwater crocodiles are known in the Northern Territory of Australia as “salties”. The Alligator Rivers are misnamed after the resemblance of the “saltie” to alligators as compared to freshwater crocodiles, which also inhabit the Northern Territory. Saltwater crocodiles generally spend the tropical wet season in freshwater swamps and rivers, moving downstream to estuaries in the dry season, and sometimes travelling far out to sea. Crocodiles compete fiercely with each other for territory, with dominant males in particular occupying the most eligible stretches of freshwater creeks and streams. The saltwater crocodile is an opportunistic apex predator capable of taking any animal that enters their territory, either in the water or on dry land. They have also been known to attack humans.
Pangil, the largest Philippine crocodile in captivity! 19-feet long!
I was actually fortunate enough that a feeding session for Pangil was scheduled during my visit! The video below shows how Pangil is huge, fierce but at the same time slow and boring! It must be his age…
There are about 700 crocodiles, both freshwater and saltwater, at the Davao Crocodile Park! Wow! The park showcases a state-of-the-art crocodile farming system at it claims to have the most recent crocodile farm design equipped with modern facilities and equipment.
Once again, I was very fortunate enough that a Crocodile Feeding Frenzy was scheduled during my visit. See video below:
Aside from the hundreds of crocodiles, the Davao Crocodile Park also plays host to other exotic species of animals such as monkeys, raptors, snakes, bear cats, birds, and other reptiles, which made my visit to the park even more worthwhile.
Some of the animals at the Davao Crocodile Park
After the Feeding Frenzy, visitors of the park were given a chance to have an encounter and pose with a small crocodile. Ofcourse, the croc’s mouth had to be wrapped in tape. Other than that, a yellow python was also waiting to pose with the visitors. I dunno, maybe I was too shy or too “chicken” to pose with either of the animals. Sigh!
The Davao Crocodile Park is definitely a must-visit when in Davao City!
(…to be continued)