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WORLD OF CROCODILES - A recent project by Natural History Productions
23 Crocodilian species inhabit most continents around the world. The 14 species on display at Crocosaurus Cove are some of the largest, weirdest & most wonderful of the worlds Crocodilians. Natural History productions built high detail scientific models of 14 exotic crocodilians (listed below). Some of these reptiles are highly endangerd, very secretive & little is known of their biology.
Ewin Wood worked closely with leading crocodile reaserchers such as Adam Briton & Sally Isberg, using acsess to specimens from Darwin Crocodile farm and Crocodylus Park. He compiled an extensive reference library of images, diagrams and descriptions of these amazing animals.
With techncial assistance from Andrew Mortimor, hundreds of hours were spent model making & making moulds of various crocodile species big & small using plaster allginate silicone fibreglass & wax. With painstacking study of his reference material Ewin accurately carved and modelled into the wax, the complex details, scale pattern, dentitian and the many characteristics that identify each species. The finished models were carefully hand painted by Ewin Wood, Museum Preparator Kym Haines & Artist Katie Bradley using light fast artist oils, enamels and acrylics. Glass eyes for most of these animals are not available off the shelf, so Ewin custom painted the eyes to accurately match each species.
The models range in size from 2.5 meters (approx 1/2 scale of an adult Saltwater Crocodile) to 1.2 metres (actual length of a Dwarf Caiman) On average each crocodilian took 150 hours to complete. Natural History Productions finished the task by installing each crocodile in the 'World of Crocodiles' exhibition space. They were placed into custom built showcases complete with interpretive text panels and images. Crocosaurus Cove opened its doors in 2008 and is now visited by many thousands of people most of which are astounded by the amazing model details and diversity of these reptiles displayed in the world of Crocodiles Exhibition.
To view a short documentary video of the making of the crocodilian models please click here.
Below is a list of the crocodilian species on display:
1. American Alligator – Alligator mississippiensis
2. Chinese Alligator – Alligator sinensis
3. Broad-snouted Caiman – Caiman Iatirostris
4. Black Caiman – Melanosuchus niger
5. Cuviers Dwarf Caiman – Paleosuchus palpebrosus
6. Orinoco Crocodile – Crocodylus intermedius
7. Freshwater Crocodile – Crocodylus johnstoni
8. Nile Crocodile – Crocodylus niloticus
9. Mugger Crocodile – Crocodylus palustris
10. Saltwater or Esturine Crocodile – Crocodylus porosus
11. Cuban Crocodile – Crocodylus rhombifer
12. African Dwarf Crocodile – Osteolaemus tetraspis
13. False Gharial – Tomistoma schlegelii
14. Indian Gharial – Gavialis gangeticus