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Gharial: Gavialidae

Conservation Status

The World Conservation Union (IUCN) and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service consider this species to be Endangered, which means that it faces a very high risk of extinction in the wild and throughout all or a significant portion of its range. In some areas, the gharial has already disappeared or is nearly gone. The greatest threat to this species is habitat loss, often caused when people clear land for farming or for firewood. Conservationists have raised and attempted to release young gharials into the wild. Some of these efforts have been successful, and others have not, but the work to save this unusual species is continuing.



Daniel, J. C. The Book of Indian Reptiles and Amphibians. New Delhi, India: Oxford University Press, 2002.

Ross, C. A., ed. Crocodiles and Alligators. New York: Facts on File Inc., 1989.

Rue, Leonard Lee. Alligators and Crocodiles. Wigston, Leicester: Magna Books, 1994.

Web sites:

"Alligators and Crocodiles." San Diego Zoo. http://www.sandiegozoo.org/animalbytes/t-crocodile.html (accessed on September 21, 2004).

"At the Zoo: Gharials Star in the Reptile Discovery Center and on Gharial Cam." Smithsonian National Zoological Park. http://nationalzoo.si.edu/Publications/ZooGoer/2002/6/gharials.cfm (accessed on December 19, 2004).

"Gavialis gangeticus (GMELIN, 1789)." Florida Museum of Natural History. http://www.flmnh.ufl.edu/natsci/herpetology/brittoncrocs/csp_ggan.htm (accessed on December 19, 2004).

"Gharial." Smithsonian National Zoological Park. http://nationalzoo.si.edu/Animals/ReptilesAmphibians/Facts/FactSheets/Gharial.cfm (accessed on September 21, 2004).

"The Gharial and the Monkey." The Crocodile Files. http://www.oneworldmagazine.org/tales/crocs/gharial.html (accessed on December 19, 2004).

Additional topics

Animal Life ResourceDinosaurs, Snakes, and Other ReptilesGharial: Gavialidae - Physical Characteristics, Habitat, Diet, Behavior And Reproduction, Conservation Status - GEOGRAPHIC RANGE, GHARIALS AND PEOPLE