Celeb croc still popular
Hong Kong - A crocodile that evaded capture for seven months in urban Hong Kong six years ago is still in the spotlight as it nears its 10th birthday, a news report said on Sunday.
The crocodile named Pui Pui, meaning "precious one" in Chinese, is the star attraction at a local wetland park, the Sunday Morning Post reported.
Nearly all of the one million people who have visited the wetland park in the past two years have stopped to watch the reptile, park management said.
"Pui Pui really is low-maintenance and she remains our biggest star," park exhibition manager Josephine Cheng said.
The crocodile made headlines in November 2003 after it was spotted in the Shan Pui River in the Yung Long district of the city.
Australian crocodile hunter John Lever and experts from the China mainland were brought in to trap the reptile, but it managed to evade capture until caught by Hong Kong fisheries and conservation officials on June 10 2004.
The crocodile weighs 47kg and measures 2.3 metres long, almost double the size when captured. It could grow to three metres and live up to 70 years, experts said.
"Saltwater crocodiles are not really social animals. They are independent and solitary. She does like to bask in the sun and do a little swimming but gets most excited when she sees the red bucket that her food comes in," Cheng said.