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Crocodile Hunting in Jamaica

Crocodile enthusiast Lawrence Henriques pats the tail of a seven-foot female crocodile at a sanctuary and captive rearing program he founded in the mountain town of Cascade in northern Jamaica. He set up the facility as a domestic market for crocodile meat and even eggs as conservationists worried that the big reptiles, protected by law since 1971 and already endangered by the steady loss of their wetland habitat, might be wiped from the wild altogether.

Crocodile Poaching in Jamaica

Crocodiles were once so abundant along the salty rim of southern Jamaica that images of their toothy jaws and spiny armor crown the tropical island's coat of arms and are stenciled on the bumpers of military vehicles.

Now, the big reptiles are increasingly difficult to spot, and not just because they blend into swampy backgrounds. These days, a growing taste for crocodile meat and even eggs in Jamaica has conservationists worried that the reptiles might be wiped from the wild altogether, although they've been protected by law since 1971.