A seven-foot-long crocodile was rescued in Bhandup by the Plants and Animals Welfare Society (PAWS Mumbai) and the Amma Care Foundation (ACF) amidst the 21-day nationwide lock down. Speaking about the rescue of the crocodile an official from PAWS Mumbai said “Being an essential service we have remained operational. On March 24, 2020 we received a distress call at around 9:25 am from the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) that a crocodile had been trapped inside a six feet deep pit inside the Bhandup Water Complex under pipeline near the Van Devi Mandir.”
PAWS volunteers HasmukhValanju, Tanmay Kolte and Chandramani Yadavled by Honorary Wildlife Warden Sunish Subramanian Kunjurushed to the spot and began with rescue procedures. In a short span of time the team was able to rescue the seven-foot-long female crocodile weighing in at about 75 kg. Dr. Jitendra Ramgaonkar, Deputy Conservator of the Forest (Territorial) Thane and Santosh Kank, the Range Forest Officer (Territorial) Mumbai were informed of the rescue, following which the crocodile was transported to the Thane Forest Office where the rescued reptile was examined was examined by PAWS Mumbai-ACF Wildlife Veterinarian Dr. Manish Pingle.
The crocodile was later relocated to its natural habitat under the supervision of the Mumbai Range Office Rapid Response Team Staff Santosh Bhagane. Kunju speculates, “that the crocodile may have come from a nearby lake and had accidently fallen into a pit and was unable to come out.”
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