Where Old Hurst starts Europe follows

CROCS UP: Europe’s only crocodile farm has achieved another first - the arrival of its first two hatchlings.

Andy Johnson, who with his wife Tracy, is celebrating the birth of Church Farm’s new arrivals, said the crocs are now 11 inches long after he successfully incubated the eggs for 90 days in 98 per cent humidity at his farm at Oldhurst

The hatchlings will be used for breeding when they are big enough, as will any that hatch next year. Thereafter, the crocs will reach slaughterable size in three years, and the Johnsons’ croc investment will start to show a return after a decade.

They have already put up one purpose-built crocodile house, which will be divided to keep the young safe from the adults, and a second house is planned as breeding progresses.

Andy’s venture into farming crocodiles has created interest from as far apart as Somerset and Yorkshire.

“The other farmers want to work with us to import crocodiles together,” he told The Hunts Post.

However, he will be importing from Australia rather than Africa in the future.

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The ‘female’ young he was sold turned out to be males that had had their manhood removed by fraudsters. When they grew to adulthood, the real male saw them as a threat and killed them. So far, that is the only crocodile meat the Johnsons have sold.