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Migration & Hibernation

Crocodiles like to stay in the same place but when dry season comes they have no choice but to pack up and leave. At the onset of dry season, the crocs in Gorongosa can sometimes be seen leaving the rivers and walking towards Lake Urema, which never dries up. It's a truly bizarre sight to see a croc walking across the flood plain!

 

Some crocs choose to sit out the dry season rather than migrate to the lake. At the Sungue River, crocs dig burrows in the soft riverbed. The mud eventually dries around them and encases them for the dry season. Occasionally, all you can see is an eye peeking out of the mud! This is a process similar to hibernation called 'estivation'. Deep beneath the mud, they can survive for three or four months without water. When the rains finally come, they emerge for a long, refreshing shower!