David Elhayani, head of the regional council in the Jordan Valley, is seriously worried over the growth of the crocodile population in his region, thinking that it could spark “an international conflict”, Sky News reported. The reason for his concerns is one farm in the Jordan Valley on the Israel-Palestinian border. These creatures were originally brought to the area as a part of a planned tourist attraction in the Petzael settlement, yet the rising Israeli-Palestinian tensions had put a damper on any proposals.
The farm was bought by the entrepreneur Gadi Biton who was planning to sell crocodile skins, but in 2012 Israel passed a law making the crocodile a protected animal banning the sale of their skins, meat or using them as any kind of merchandise. For more than 20 years the crocodiles were breeding on the farm in the valley. The current growth in the reptiles’ population could lead to the spawning of thousands of crocodiles in the area that nobody knows what to do with. The latest attempt to move the crocodiles to Cyprus failed because of the opposition of local Cypriot communities
While the future location of the crocodiles is unclear, they remain stuck on the farm, where a lone worker comes to feed them with dead chickens each day. Some of the crocodiles have even managed to escape before – one of the attempts involved 70 reptiles, provoking a three-day hunt. Elhayani fears that the possible massive escape of the crocodiles could cause a much bigger international security threat. “Maybe then someone will wake up and find a quick solution to this problem,” he added.