West African slender-snouted crocodile

With only a few thousand remaining individuals, this critically endangered species is on the verge of extinction

Rutpratheep Nilpechr

These crocodiles are masters of stealth, often lurking just below the water’s surface with only their eyes and nostrils exposed, allowing them to observe their surroundings without revealing their presence to potential prey or predators. Despite their seemingly inconspicuous presence, slender-nosed crocodiles possess keen senses of sight, smell, and hearing, enabling them to detect even the slightest movements or sounds in their aquatic environment. Their slender snouts are well-adapted for precision hunting, acting like tweezers to extract prey from tight spaces such as holes and small crevices along the water’s edge.

The exact population size of slender-nosed crocodiles remains uncertain. Still, evidence suggests that their numbers are declining due to threats from human activities and habitat loss. The species faces significant pressures from various factors, including unsustainable fishing practices, direct hunting for their meat and valuable hides, habitat degradation caused by deforestation and urbanization, and fragmentation of their natural habitats by dams and other infrastructure projects. These cumulative threats pose significant challenges to the long-term survival of slender-nosed crocodiles across their entire range.

Conservation efforts to protect slender-nosed crocodiles and their habitats are essential for ensuring the species’ continued existence. Initiatives focused on habitat restoration, anti-poaching measures, and community-based conservation projects can help mitigate these crocodiles’ threats and promote sustainable coexistence between humans and wildlife.

Distribution

Country
Population est.
Status
Year
Comments
Angola
2013
Presence Uncertain
Benin
2013
Possibly Extinct
Burkina Faso
2013
Possibly Extinct
Cameroon
2013
Central Af. Rep.
2013
Chad
0
Official estimate
EX
Extinct locally
Congo-Brazzaville
2013
Côte D’ivoire
2013
DR Congo (Kinshasa)
2013
Equatorial Guinea
2013
Possibly Extinct
Gabon
2013
Gambia
2013
Ghana
2013
Guinea-Bissau
2013
Possibly Extinct
Guinea
2013
Presence Uncertain
Liberia
2013
Mali
2013
Possibly Extinct
Nigeria
2013
Presence Uncertain
Senegal
2013
Possibly Extinct
Sierra Leone
2013
Tanzania
2013
Possibly Extinct
Togo
2013
Presence Uncertain
Zambia
2013
Possibly Extinct

Did you know?

  • Slender-snouted crocodiles are one of the crocodilians known to climb trees

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Terrestrial / Aquatic

Altricial / Precocial

Polygamous / Monogamous

Dimorphic (size) / Monomorphic

Active: Diurnal / Nocturnal

Social behavior: Solitary / Pack / Herd

Diet: Carnivore / Herbivore / Omnivore / Piscivorous / Insectivore

Migratory: Yes / No

Domesticated: Yes / No

Dangerous: Yes / No