June 21, 2013
The National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA) is advising the public to exercise extreme caution when hunting crabs in wetlands or swamps. Wetlands are natural habitats for crocodiles and crab hunters may encounter the animals while hunting crabs.
Crab hunting is a popular Jamaican activity usually done at nights during the months of April through to June.
Persons who encounter crocodiles should remain calm and leave the area quietly. Crocodiles are sensitive animals which may react dangerously if cornered or attacked. They are one of Jamaica’s many endangered animal species and are protected by law. Capturing or killing the animal is an offence under the Wild Life Protection Act. Persons found guilty of this offence are liable to a fine of up to $100,000 or twelve (12) months imprisonment.
The Public is also being advised that there is no payment for the apprehension or recovery of a crocodile. If crocodiles are seen in areas where they may pose a threat to human activities, NEPA should be contacted at 754-7540 or 1-888-991-5005. Contact may also be made with 119 or the nearest police station.