Thousands of crocodiles are swarming over South Africa’s Limpopo River area after a flood forced a nearby farm to release the reptiles. According to TV-Novosti, 15,000 crocs have escaped, forcing the government to call in police and army units to evacuate residents from their homes.
The species of crocodile being raised at the The Rakwena farm has been confirmed to be the Nile crocodile. Nile crocodiles live in many parts of Africa and are the largest reptiles on the continent. A typical specimen can grow to anywhere from 11 to 18 feet long and weigh well over 1500 pounds. They are historically very aggressive and territorial, attacking any animals their size or smaller. Nile crocs have been known to fatally attack humans.
Authorities are currently conducting search-and-capture missions in the region but many crocodiles remain at large.
“There used to be only a few crocodiles in the Limpopo River,” local resident Zane Langman told South Africa’s Beeld newspaper. “Now there are a lot.”
Langman came into contact with several adult crocodiles as they circled around one of his friend’s houses. His friend stayed on the roof and Langman had to make a impromptu rescue mission with a boat. Officials advise staying indoors if possible and be on the lookout for the large reptilians.