Friday, January 26, 2007

Tico Tarzan tames croc

Gilberto Shedden Graham feeds 'Poncho', the crocodile that he cured and tamed after it was shot by a farmer, in Limon, Costa Rica. (Photo by Rafael Pacheco/Al Dia)(ITN News) - A dog is usually described as a man's best friend, but in Limon, Costa Rica a man has become best mates with "Pocho," a huge 16.5 foot crocodile weighing almost 1,000 lbs.

Gilberto Shedden Graham has seemingly domesticated the croc, and has even started his own show in which he cavorts with the beast in a swimming pool and gives it commands.

During the performance, Gilberto, known also as the Tico Tarzan, gets up close to the open jaw of the crocodile, and even bites one of the animal's teeth.

An Italian tourist came away from the show shaking his head, saying: "I've never scene a show like this. It's the first time I've seen a person tame a crocodile."

Tico Tarzan said he found the reptile wounded by a bullet five years ago after it had been shot by a farmer who wanted to keep it from eating his cattle.

He claims he cured and fed the crocodile - and little by little he got to know the croc and gained its confidence.

Photo credit: Rafael Pacheco/Al Dia Newspaper. To see Al Dia's complete gallery of Pocho and Gilberto click here.

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