An archive of stories and photos from our family trip to South India.

Location: Seattle


The Crocodile Bank

Yesterday we took a late-afternoon break from our "extra-chill pool day" to go by taxi to the Crocodile Bank. Founded in 1976 to help preserve the three species of Indian crocodiles, the place has grown to an overwhelming profusion of crocs, hundreds of them, 14 species, in large naturalistic enclosures behind low stone walls.

It was late afternoon, sun filtering through the trees, and Indian families strolling around taking it all in as we were. We were stopped several times, as usual, so that people could take pictures with us, or so that Tom could take their picture posed with Claire. In one case a very giggly group of girls crowded around Claire and hoisted her up, insisting we snap their picture. This has all become par for the course and Claire is pretty un-fazed by it all.

Also at the Croc Bank we visited the area where they take venom from four species of local poisonous snakes (including Cobras and the uber-deadly Crake), to make anti-venom. In a long dark shed several men tended hundreds of clay pots, each of which was covered with a cloth and held a snake. During the demonstration they explained about the snakes and how fast you would die after being bitten by each (Cobra = 6 hours, Crake = 2 hours). Then they used long stick with hooks on the ends to fish snakes out of the pots, carry them over to a table, and milk them for venom by having them bite into a jar covered with a thin rubber lid.