Wild Chronicles heads to a breeding facility in Nepal that harbors gharials, the only surviving members of an ancient group of crocodilians. Their sharp teeth and huge size make them look fearsome, but gharials are more threatened than threatening. And despite pressure from dams, poachers, and fishermen, they're making a comeback, as conservationists use science to give very sensitive, very rare crocs a second chance at survival.

  1. Gharials are now found in only two countries in the world. What are these countries?

    • Answer

      Gharials are only found in India and Nepal.

  2. What is the primary threat to gharials in the wild?

    • Answer

      Habitat loss is the biggest threat to gharials. In particular, dams are drowning gharial habitats.

  3. Do gharials pose a threat to human populations?

    • Answer

      No, their diet consists almost entirely of fish.

  4. How long are baby gharials force-fed in the facility?

    • Answer

      People must force-feed fish to baby gharials for about six months.

  5. How many gharials live in the wild?

    • Answer

      More than 1,500 gharials live in the wild in India and Nepal.

breed
Verb

to produce offspring.

captive breeding
Noun

reproduction of rare species controlled by humans in a closed environment, such as a zoo.

conservationist
Noun

person who works to preserve natural habitats.

crocodilian
adjective, noun

order of reptiles that includes crocodiles, alligators, caimans, and gharials.

dam
Noun

structure built across a river or other waterway to control the flow of water.

facility
Noun

a building or room that serves a specific function.

poacher
Noun

person who hunts or fishes illegally.

threaten
Verb

to scare or be a source of danger.