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St. Pete Organization to Adopt Baby Crocodile

Published: April 1, 2014 (Issue # 1803)



  • Veles employees have been regularly posting information on their Vkontakte page about Gena Grazhdansky the crocodile, including photos.
    Photo: VKontakte

A baby African crocodile discovered in a St. Petersburg yard in early March may be adopted by organizations tied to the local government, the head of a local quarantine center told The St. Petersburg Times on Monday.

"We may keep the crocodile if someone takes responsibility for it," said Tatyana Skvortsova, director of the Leningrad region quarantine center Veles.

Related: Russia Street Cleaners Find Baby African Crocodile in St. Petersburg

Veles is a private organization for the housing, treatment, rehabilitation and quarantine of wild animals, and it operates partly on donations and the work of volunteers, according to its website.

"There are organizations linked to the St. Petersburg government that showed their willingness [to sponsor the crocodile's life]," Skvortsova said, without naming the organizations.

Alternatively, the animal may go to one of two zoos in other cities, which have also said they were interested in taking the crocodile in. Most likely, Veles will give the crocodile to its new home free of charge, she said.

"But we will not hand the animal over to private hands, that is for certain — even if someone asks for it, because a crocodile is not suited for it," Skvortsova said.

Before being transferred anywhere, the animal has to undergo a quarantine and more medical examinations, which can take about a month.

Veles employees have been regularly posting information about the crocodile's appetite, weight and sleep on the center's Vkontakte page, as well as photos of the animal.

"He is eating well, has gotten used to his new home and is already defending it," Veles founder Alexander Fyodorov wrote in his latest post about the crocodile on Friday.

A video of the crocodile posted on VKontakte earlier that day showed the crocodile, named Gena Grazhdansky, lying on a brick near a small pool and hissing at the camera before jumping into water.

The crocodile appeared to be several dozen centimeters long, just as when he was found.

A VKontakte user asked the center's employees what they were planning to do with the crocodile when it reaches a length of 2 1/2 meters within a year. Veles creative director Olga Berezina replied that they were planning to love the animal.





 


ALL ABOUT TOWN

Friday, Aug. 29


Park Pobedy will feature the sights and sounds of the world outside of Russia during the Open Art International Festival today. Taste foreign cuisine, learn how to make tea like the Chinese or relax in a hammock during the free event. Although entrance is free, you must register beforehand if you wish to attend.



Saturday, Aug. 30


Break out the tweed and channel your inner Englishman during the English Hunt Picnic this afternoon organized by the Bagmut stables from Krasny Bor in the Leningrad Oblast. Equestrian stunts, English archery and classic hunting fashion will all be available to visitors hoping to live like the characters in “Downton Abbey” if only for a day. Tickets for the event cost 7,900 rubles ($219.40).


Bookworms will have their chance to swap out well-read classics for something new for their bookshelves at Knigovorot, a free book exchange that will be held in the Yusupov Garden on Sadovaya Ulitsa today. Come for the chance to get a new book or take the opportunity to discuss the literary merits of your favorite authors with fellow fans.



Sunday, Aug. 31


The Neva Delta International Blues Festival wraps up this afternoon on Vasilevsky Island with a concert featuring not only some of Russia’s best blues bands but international stars as well. Admission is free for all three days of the festival, which begins on Aug. 29, and the shows starting at 5 p.m. each day.



Monday, Sept. 1


Today marks the beginning of Lermontov-Fest, a fall festival celebrating the life of one of Russia’s most remarkable poets who, in a fate eerily similar to Pushkin’s, was killed in a duel at the age of 26. Organized by the Lermontov Library System, the next several months will see art exhibitions, concerts and public lectures focusing on the Lermontov’s short yet prolific career. Check the Lermontov Library System’s website for more details.



Tuesday, Sept. 2


Join expats and practice your Russian during the Russian Club’s weekly meetings every Tuesday night at 7:30 p.m. The club is free to participate in although you need to be a registered member of Couchsurfing.



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