World’s oldest crocodile still alive despite rumors

Crocodile swimming.
Crocodile swimming. Photo credit Getty Images

Despite rumors, the world’s oldest Nile crocodile is still alive and kicking, as South Africa’s 122-year-old croc, Henry, is swimming and sunbathing at his home.

In a statement released Tuesday, Crocworld, the conservation center in South Africa where Henry lives, shared the news.

In the release, Crocworld joked that Henry had joined several other celebrities with false death reports, including Sir Paul McCartney, Morgan Freeman, and Russell Crowe.

“And now, Crocworld Conservation Centre’s cherished Henry the Nile crocodile can be named among them, but the team is happy to announce that its most famous resident is alive and well,” Crocworld said.

The conservation center’s reptile curator, Wade Kilian, noted that Henry is still happy and healthy with his six wives. Killian also said he is still greeting visitors who come to see him.

“He might be missing a few toes and teeth, but after 122 years on the planet, that’s to be expected! He’s happy, healthy, and ready to welcome visitors – from a distance,” Kilian said.

Henry is believed to be the world’s oldest known Nile crocodile in captivity, having fathered more than 10,000 offspring. The croc was moved to Crocworld in 1985 when he was a young 85-year-old.

“Henry is not only the oldest crocodile at the center, but he also happens to be one of the biggest – probably explaining his ability to survive almost 123 years on Earth! At a whopping five meters in length and weighing an estimated 750 kilograms, Henry is not a croc you want to take on,” Crocworld said.

The conservation shared that every year on Henry’s birthday, Dec. 16, the Crocworld team will make cupcakes for guests and give the big boy something meaty.

Kilian shared in the release that Henry was born in the Okavango Delta in Botswana, where he lived for the majority of his life until entering captivity. Now, the big boy spends his days relaxing while entertaining his fans.

Featured Image Photo Credit: Getty Images