Snappy the crocodile turns bright orange | News.com.au
Snappy the Croc Turns Bright Orange
Source: news.com.au Picture: Alex Coppel
CRIKEY, an orange croc!
At first glance, it looks like "Snappy" has tanned up for the Brownlow, the Herald Sun reported.
But the cranky chameleon has no one to blame but himself for changing colour - after apparently biting off more than he could chew.
Owner Tracey Sandstrom, who runs Roaming Reptiles, said Snappy made a meal out of the filter in his water tank.
"I think it caused the pH levels in his water to soar which has led to the change in colour."
She was stunned when her prized pet turned bright orange.
"Snappy's pretty territorial and he attacked the filter one day and a few weeks after that, I noticed he was orange," she said.
The 2.5m croc stays warm at night in his heated indoor tank before moving outside through his "croc flap" to bask in sunshine by day.
"It doesn't seem to have affected him at all. He's still got a healthy appetite, is normally aggro and doing everything he always does," Ms Sandstrom said.
Darwin croc expert Grahame Webb examined the Herald Sun photos and confirmed Snappy was a picture of health.
Professor Webb said he had seen crocs with stained skin and teeth before, usually caused by tannins in their water.
"Our guess is that it is something in the water such as iron or tannins from leaves or some red algae that oxidises when it dries," Professor Webb said.
"It seemed significant to us that the tongue was not coloured, or the inside of the angle of the jaw, which are more likely not to dry, whereas the skin would dry when they bask."
Professor Webb some some foods could possibly also cause an animal to go a reddish color.
"That happens evidently if they have high concentrations of beta carotene, but it would be unusual to use such foods. Snappy certainly seems OK."
Photo: Alex Coppel
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