Searching For Mythological Gharial Crocodile | Weird Creatures | Wild Things Documentary

Perhaps this thing was a fish eater now this.

More appropriate for this program because you’ve found some kind of link with the gharial is that is that correct yes we looked at the snout of Baryonyx and the snout of her gharial and we looked at them from a sort of biomechanical point of view and.

So we we put the Baryonyx and also AG aerial threw it at the set of tests and it turns out that they’re both skulls are built in the same sort of way to withstand the kinds of stresses that would be encountered with.

Snapping and slashing and capturing fish all those 90 degrees slashes to the left and to the right and all of the cage fish you suspect this animal was also capable of doing okay well I’ve been able to move.

Flexible way as well as use its claws and so that the skulls seem to be built to accommodate those stresses so ancestors of the goryo who lived in.

The Cretaceous about 65 billion years ago arrived at the same solution as Baryonyx this was a fish eating dinosaur that lived over a hundred and twenty million years ago this male lost not only his upper jaw but also.

The other peculiarities of the gharial the gar that was what no that was the girls well it’s hard to establish how he would fare in the wild but here he seems to be doing fine the GAR named after an Indian water pot is a large growth from the nostrils occurring only in mature males we still don’t know exactly what it’s for but it must have meant something to his rivals in fact.

A swollen gar on the end of your nose must make feeding increasingly difficult having spent millions of years evolving a long slim hydrodynamic snout why would a male spoil it all by growing a bulge on the end of his nose but if evolution tells us anything it is that nothing lasts and less it’s useful now for the first time to help scientists at.

Bristol and Exeter universities we can test the effect of the gara on feeding a computer-generated model of the gharial skull and jaws with and without the distinctive male appendage is compared now although the protrusion might act as a hydrofoil and help the gharial move faster through the water for sideways swipes it would be a serious disadvantage.

So given this major handicap in feeding what are the benefits the gir up might offer its owner in nature feeding actually takes place under the water because of course fish do not.

Arrive from the sky like they do here in the crop bank luckily Rome has a pair of goryeo here in a tank will their feeding activities demonstrate in the flesh or the computer program has modeled well this is the perfect opportunity to see or show you how the Gallo puts that extraordinary snout teeth and.

This general body plan to good use now what this girl’s doing is demonstrating what crocodiles do so well they have fantastic energy economics is one of the secrets to their success their metabolism is able to be shut right down so it’s barely ticking over well as.

As warm-blooded mammals we have very high heating bills we have to expend energy.

All the time in order to just stay this temperature a crocodile isn’t tied down by those thermal rules it can just shut down and do what this guy is doing at the moment which is resting on the bottom we wanted to solve the mystery of the gharial z– gara but today simply wasn’t our day you can lead a girl to water but you can’t make it feed even if you do stop the tank they’ve not beaten for several weeks which is you know perfectly normal for crocodiles but with feeding their.

But work lovely so so far we’ve dumped in a couple of dead fish and we’ve pleased the Turtles knowing the softshell turtles which also fantastic animals have have dined out today they don’t like.

Kings in fact I only thought we try a big live fish and we’ve got this lovely snakehead which is dinner and in fact the only thing really moving in this tank at the moment is everything that we want to be eaten by the.

Gorilla the gorilla so far I’ve done the best impression of a log I guess they’re just not moving at all though I guess I’ll snake is pretty happy about it in fact earlier on we had some tourists come through here which that rom translated the fact that they were saying that they were if the dad was telling the kids that all these animals at the front swimming around there live.

The ones at the back their models so we just make most of it.

Just look at Turtles that’s nice one look unable to reach any conclusions on feeding ramen I decided to explore another Avenue could the.

Gara be for communication I see I’ve seen Ronda in some very bizarre things about cyber this is one of them this has actually a bit of logic behind it since many animals particularly crocodilians will respond if you can get it right to impersonations of a rival male se or distressed young us out there and we thought we’d try and get to the bottom.

Of the mystery of the gar and he does this kind of blowing display and what we thought we’d just try it see if it works this isn’t everything else with her here it doesn’t seem to be working today we thought we’d try and emulate that but yet nothing okay so let’s see if he signals.

Back are you doing there um you gotta be perfect so.

If it’s not about feeding or communication my the girl strange protuberance simply be a way of getting noticed by the opposite sex this one is not playing ball but there are plenty of other.

Animals who aren’t shy of advertising this sexuality is the gara the reptile equivalent of the medallion my mission is to discover what the gara thought we’d bump on the end of and even where the crocodiles nose is actually for maybe the answer is actually all around us every species including our own likes.

To get noticed whether in the jungles of India or in our more familiar urban jungles back home it’s advertising advertising of the sexes and we do it too just standing around here it’s obvious bling.

Accessories flash cars whichever why we do it it’s communicating between the sexes without using language basically what you’re saying is if I can afford this amount.

Of money and this amount of effort imagine what I can do for you babe in the animal kingdom the idea is pretty much exactly the same so could the gara be the key to understanding crocodilian bling the problem until recently had been whether or not they existed at all a point I discussed. Milner so the actual gara itself is actually a it’s not obviously made of bone in that goes soft its soft tissue that accounts for why scientists weren’t sure if it existed because it’s only bones and fossils that they had to work it’s that that.

Makes them very unique among the crocodiles is the fact that this.

Is the only of course sexually dimorphic crocodile there’s a difference between the male and the thing that’s right it’s very a very clear one you can see it in the skeleton as well.

As the soft tissue and no other crocodile has anything like that so we.

Need the dinosaur sexually dimorphic yes one or two of them were if we look down here this is a skull of a plant-eating dinosaur called a hadrosaur or a duck-billed dinosaur and these things we know they lived in very large.

Herds and a lot of them had very fancy headgear like this one does you can see it’s got a huge long crest on the top of.

The head and that crest although it’s made of bone it’s completely Hollow but this particular dinosaur we even know what sort of sound it made and it made a sort of low trumpeting tromboney type of noise so in this works basically as an echo chamber amplifies the sound so in some.

Respects it could have a lot in common with the strategy used.

By art a guy or crocodiles it’s suppose that that’s that it sounds as well yes and in for this particular hadrosaurs we have enough examples to be fairly sure that.

We can see sexual selection as well because the the length and.

The curvature of that huge crest seems to differ in animals that are otherwise the same size so the longer more curved ones appear probably to be males there’s.

Another animal with a strange nose that invests a large amount of energy in advertising it’s sex the male Indian elephant has huge tusks but the female has none a few males though do not grow tusks that are known.

To be stronger this confirms to us that there is an expense to male advertising in the case of the male peacock those fancy tail feathers must be positively dangerous.

Because they advertise their presence to every predator around still in the course of natural selection that risk must be worthwhile or peacocks would be a thing of the.

Past in fact it has been suggested by scientists but it signals.

To the female that the male is disease free tail feathers are unable to grow in the presence of some parasites it’s quite a risky.

Strategy if you think about it because there’s a.

Trade-off you’re putting yourself out there but at the same time you’re making yourself obvious to others now in order to buy yourself a flash car you’re spending money to do it but hopefully it’d be worth your because what you’re saying to your partners is look how.

Well I’m sorted out look what I can actually do and imagine just how healthy I am as well and that also leads on to their ultimate goal which is how healthy our progeny are going to be bling flash cars pierce.

Bellybuttons tasks tail feathers or a bump on the end of your nose advertising your sexuality to prospective mate is the key to survival of any species but after 65 million years on the planet the guy is still fighting for it’s very survival the gara still does its job as well as it ever.

Did but now they face a new threat I traveled to northern India to meet a man who is actively involved in gharial conservation dinner boutique basu is a forest officer who.

Has been working with gharial for over 30 years since meeting wrong whitaker Wow so these little fellows you take we’re taking put out today what’s the processor today what are you doing with them well we have to catch them safely and securely so that they don’t injure themselves Ike and then we mark them measure them fix them the first for watch and learn yeah Basu heads a gharial captive breeding project hatchlings are raised until big enough to stand a good chance of survival.

In the wild which is where these juveniles are headed so how old are these animals these are no three to four years old okay you were.

Of the first people I believe collect gharial eggs in the wild and really mean captive and what was it I’m obviously these animals were becoming very endangered in the wild but I mean how serious was it I mean how few will estimated that they were less than 300 left in the world it’s safe to say you are.

To the gharial crocodile what Dian Fossey was two gorillas is that correct okay well hold you out this that’s real eggs go in Craig that any one I don’t want y’all get a gun yeah okay the idea is to keep our eyes covered okay bear in mind this animals now very alert it knows something’s up.

They’re not aggressive Crocs however it’s not on a scale of one to ten I’m I’ve been a little bit careful but I’m being about five here I’ve got to be quick I’ll probably screw it up like I’ll screw it up the ceiling popped.

Out that was a bad one okay and that’s a duel once blindfolded with a hessian sack the younger you’ll calm down one now for the sorting and sexing party for this population to stand a chance it’s important to get the ratio of males to females correct surprisingly other release programs have overlooked this elementary factor.

In the 1970s a number of gharial were released in the tumble River in central India which turned out to be composed entirely of.

Females now this is because it’s very hard to sex a girl when it’s very young one girl.

Processed how many more fourteen more to go as a consequence Romulus Whitaker and others estimated that in the 1970s only about ten males were left in the wild this is now numbering the animal is.

It so that you’ll recognize it as an individual it’s.

Like trimming your toenails the crocodile’s jaws very weak opening that way it’s that that’s the strong.

Muscle in a crocodile but did you call that it’s floral tip and these are the crates they’re going to travel in there how many are we putting in the box best school work really to portray the more crammed they are the less chance of them hurting themselves record cutting off a particular scoot is an easy and painless way of identifying the individuals fueled by ultra sweet.

Indian tea or forget about the sugar thing and I’m ready for the pilgrimage after loading dousing Porter and a small problem with the internal combustion engine it’s off now to a new life 125 miles away through the rush-hour traffic of Lucknow while waiting for a very slow train to pass the reality of the girl’s predicament becomes.

Clear with a population of over 1 billion humans in India there are fewer and fewer places left for such a specialized rare type however any possibility of dejection is smartly dealt with by another sugar spike drink from Bassett white but right now we does mean that unfortunate we’re now gonna have to drive.

In tonight something like 120 or 5 or miles north of here to where the girls are going.

To be released the good news for the girls is that it’s gonna be nice and cool and there’s no danger of them over eg and when we all wake up in the morning it’s gonna be nice and peaceful and quiet and we leave with the many knows and hustle and bustle of Lucknow world behind us let’s go and uncomfortable night is ahead for all concerned finally having escaped from the noise of the Indian traffic we arrived in Catania.

Ghat with our valuable cargo of gharial this is an isolated wildlife reserve in the north of India close to the Nepalese border and home to about 45 adult individuals.

Rom is already here it’s a place he knows well having worked with Basu for years while.

We unload the Crocs he checks out the location it did take a little longer than we at first expected but it’s worth it for.

All those moments of stuffing Crocs and in boxes and all those indignities that they suffered this is what it’s all for the beautiful get away River and this is gonna be the home for our Gary oh I have to say a more peaceful and inspiring scene I couldn’t have hoped for.

However the reality is slightly different because we’ve only been here a couple of minutes.

And just chain hello hello they’ve all met under.

Our banyan tree there must be a village nearby so once again we’re reminded that you were never far away from people and some of the conflicts that they create with wildlife okay Rob they’ve.

Just sort of appeared out of nowhere before we let them go a young girl faced a short boat journey to an isolated sand bank this keeps them away from the crowds of curious people who lend a hand to make the journey possible well freedom or white cause being ripped on the thing that’s sitting in the show for 24 hours so they have bit sluggish so this is in completely alien environment for them shot from the sudden exposure to open river you can.

Tell they’re getting a bit more just because the Irish guys from very very big which is.

Obviously what they’re doing in the Box where it’s nice and dark when it takes.

A while it means they’re just a little bit that source only five percent of Gary legs ever reached this stage in the wild predation deformity and problems with incubation take a massive toll I have to say having done that journey myself now I know exactly how they’re feeling now.

To fend for themselves the main threats of these yearlings is being washed away in the monsoons and finishing up lost in hostile waters downstream you know these things as they develop for the last last few years and you’ve known them as when they hatched even so this must be an interesting.

Feeling for you yeah what was it like it feels good it feels good that they have survived the early months and when they’re prone to disease and they’ve grown beyond that and now they’re ready to go back into their natural habitats if it wasn’t for human beings these animals.

Would probably have a very good future ahead of them now yes here they have the chance of what we call forming breeding groups and but outside they live in isolation with themselves and they won’t contribute to the survival of the species so as you say this is one of the one of the best places.

For one of the best habitats you go it’s best in terms of quality but it’s hopelessly.

Small it’s reached its carrying capacity and the number of adult in the population they just refuse to go beyond 45 or 50 so.

To die I guess you’ve effectively doubled the population in this protected area of gharial now what is this of the long-term future for the little guys we released today a lot of it depends on how people learn to live with Guardian they have two problems or check the preserves one is nylon Nets there’s a fish in it he has.

Fishing nets I’ve also heard about sand morning test is that correct the quality of sand it’s excellent for building so it’s being mined heavily and lot of.

The banks where the courrier climb up for nesting they require some very specialized sand banks which are high and steep I don’t think it’s sustainable the amount of finding.

What’s going on right now right what has bought the.

Gharial to these dire straits the most aquatic of the crocodilians the gharial athlete depends on the few remaining Indian rivers free from human interference the only way we can assess the fitness of adult populations is to go out on a boat and see it for ourselves being here with ramen the girls last stronghold is like.

Stepping back into a prehistoric Eden even for ROM this is a rare treat we’re here to find out how previous year’s releases are faring in this stretch of water yes good news the bad news is the good news is the chance.

Of seeing a fairly high the bad news is it’s not a good situation for the crops one of the last places one of the last few places where they can it’s not meeting a rock god not meeting Robert coolspot similar but meeting the actual yes you girl girl now I’ve never.

Tired of them every time I see a girl it’s just like you know it’s very holy experience I think I see a male you see us huge Gaara just about straight 12 o’clock you see that big lump stick you know what Oh it’s amazing how exciting like hey you know I mean I’ve seen them all my life.

But still I don’t know how close we’re gonna get but it will be great to get a few pages and holding this sort of baby is good at me next to impossible that’s ridiculous it is ridiculous called out a.

Camera joking apart sometimes in the world of sexual advertising size really does matter especially if you’re in the business of attracting a mate it’s a big gang straight up ahead Oh so what we’re.