What a croc!

What a croc!

Curiously, the entry ticket to the infamous Siem Reap Crocodile Farm reads, “Help Preserve Wild Animals”.

But nothing roams free here. The only wild critters in the farm are angry captive crocs cheesed off with the miserable conditions they endure.

Granted, the farm does actively pursue preservation – a booth near the entrance sells little plastic bags containing preserved internal organs of crocodiles, and the girl at the counter says these are very powerful medicine.

So too, apparently, are the recycled water bottles full of crocodile blood and wine that are also on sale.

The croc farm, on the first bend of the Siem Reap River past the Old Market, has long been a downtown feature, and has long been reviled by expat animal lovers who rank it the pits as far as tourist attractions go.

The farm is simply a series of stark, cement-lined pools housing saurians. Lots of them. Their number includes a collection of huge old crocs, many sporting scars or gaping cuts caused by fighting, and some have even had their tails chomped off.

Local legend holds that these big bull crocs are true man-eaters because people were fed to them by the Khmer Rouge, but there seems to be no historical record attesting to this.

Located as it is on prime riverside real estate, and seemingly always devoid of paying customers, rumours have long swept town that the farm is due to close.

But obviously the Khmer owners think otherwise, and in recent weeks the farm has been undergoing a major revamp, with thatched shelters, ornamental pools and a collection of concrete deer and peacocks installed.

Some basic pens housing forlorn, flustered birds have also been added, but most of the work involves the construction of a large souvenir store.
A large sign has been painted, ready for erection and reading, “Visit Crocodile Farm Nave”. The sign also boasts “1168 Crocodile & Animals”. But then again, who’s counting?

MOST VIEWED

  • ‘Kingdom lacks up to 400MW in available electricity’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has called on the general public, hoteliers and businesspeople with generators to use them as back-up as the Electricity Authority of Cambodia cannot generate enough electricity to meet needs due to low water levels in power station reservoirs. On Saturday evening

  • Sor Chandeth defends his criticism of Hun Sen

    Former senator Sor Chandeth has defended his choice of words when criticising Hun Sen, saying he was merely speaking metaphorically to attack the Prime Minister’s political life, not his actual person, as the latter seeks damages. [img] Chandeth spoke to The Post on Thursday,

  • South Korea’s Moon arrives in Kingdom for state visit

    South Korean president Moon Jae-in and his wife arrived in Phnom Penh on Thursday at the start of a three-day state visit to Cambodia to strengthen ties and further the friendship between the two countries. After arriving at the Phnom Penh International Airport in the

  • Youths band together to clean ‘filthy’ Boeung Trabek canal

    Inspired by their affection for the environment, a desire to have a clean and beautiful city, and wanting to send a message to people to stop littering, a group of some two dozen volunteer youths have taken to picking up trash day and night from