Madras Crocodile Bank Trust Chennai
Madras Crocodile Bank Trust,a reptile zoo and herpetology research center registered as a trust and recognised zoo and India’s leading institution for herpeto faunal conservation, research and education.
It is the first breeding center for crocodiles in Asia and it comes under the Central Zoo Authority, Ministry of Environment and Forests, Government of India.
It was established with the aim of preserving three Indian endangered species of crocodile namely the mugger crocodile, the salt water crocodile and the gharjal.
In 1984, the bank collaborated with Dr. J.W. Lang from University of North Dakota, who initiated a major project on the reproductive biology of the mugger crocodile.
The research infrastructure at the bank was augmented by the funds for this project, chiefly a well-equipped laboratory and the collaboration with the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology.
Harry Andrews carried out this project from 1984 to1994 under the supervision of Dr. Lang, who made periodic visits to the bank. The project currently focuses on reptile reproduction, egg incubation, and temperature-dependent sex determination.
The centre is the biggest crocodile sanctuary in India and one of the world’s largest collections of crocodiles and alligators.
The Croc Bank grounds covered by coastal dune forest provides a haven for native wildlife, including large breeding colonies of water birds and a secure nesting beach for olive ridley sea turtles
As of 2011, it has a total of 2,483 animals, including 14 species of crocodiles, 10 species of turtles, 3 species of snakes, and 1 species of lizard.