Something Was Wrong
An injured crocodile was helped in a small Sudanese village when it washed up onshore. After sharing space with his species for many years, the villagers immediately recognized there was something wrong with the animal.
In addition to moving slowly and appearing disoriented, the creature had a round, protruding belly. In order to save the animal, the stomach of the animal had to be cut open, exposing the contents. As soon as everyone realized what was going on, they had only one question in mind. How did the crocodile acquire the contents of its stomach?
He Had To Step In
He was familiar with many animals, including crocodiles, in the village he lived in all his life.
As he approached the large animal, his heart beat heavily even though he had the best equipment to do the job. Any wrong move would put his family in grave danger, and he knew he could not risk it.
As Michael approached the crocodile, he kept an eye on his footsteps to ensure that they were steady and slow. It was important for him to determine what was wrong with the animal so that it would leave his family alone and go back into the waters.
His awareness of the problem grew as he approached. The pain was definitely coming from the croc’s stomach, so Michael prepared himself for what was to come.
He Couldn’t Believe It
In preparation for surgery, Michael set up his equipment and began preparing the large animal for surgery. It wasn’t long before the man saw what lay inside the stomach of the crocodile after the crocodile’s belly had been cut open.
Michael quickly identified the problem, but the object in the animal should have been completely foreign to it. As soon as Michael saw it, his jaw dropped. How could this have happened? Did Michael save the animal in the best way he could?
Nile River waters, which flow through Sudan, are frequently home to crocodiles. It is estimated that the dangerous creatures can grow to over 2,000 pounds and extend to more than 20 feet in length, so humans typically aren’t able to defeat them due to their size and strength.
This is why locals avoid the area when the large animals are roaming around looking for food.
Children in the area were taught from a young age not to approach the waters of the river alone and to stay away from crocodiles.
In the past, it was common knowledge to never confront large animals and to give the dangerous creatures their space. One man would soon meet the apex predator head-on as a result of something that was about to happen.
Whenever he helped someone, he broke the rules that were meant to keep them safe, especially when helping meant breaking the rules that were meant to keep them safe.
Michael decided one day, out of compassion, to get close to an animal twice his size. As long as he was alive, he was always focused on protecting his family. It wasn’t that he wanted to put himself in danger.
He Loved It
Over the course of his 38 years, Michael has lived in Sudan. Despite the rough climate and the unattractive area, he loved the life he had and would have given anything to be living there again.
As a result, he continued to strive each day to make his children’s lives better than his own.
He Cared About Others
Growing up on his family’s farm, where he worked, Michael had plenty of opportunities to help others.
In addition to providing enough food for the family, the farm also produced plenty of surplus food, so harvesting the rest was beneficial for the entire town. In addition to being a compassionate soul, Michael enjoyed sharing the produce he grew each year, which made him a well-known person in town.
A Brave Young Man
Despite his caring nature, Michael had a side to him not everyone saw, and his family knew about it. Despite his fearlessness, Michael sometimes got into dangerous situations because of his courage.
The natural hazards in Sudan could be life-threatening at times, so Michael had gotten himself into more than one situation that his family thought he would not survive.
Proud of His Scars
Although Michael’s mother didn’t love this side of her son, he reveled in being able to share his experiences with his friends.
He showed off his scars and told his tales with pride, knowing that if anyone needed to call on him for help, he would be the first one to show up. So when danger presented itself, he soon leaped into action.
Michael was well known in his town thanks to his many deeds, and the people who lived around him thought of him as a leader of their area. He was always accountable, so many people came to him for advice.
That’s why when the situation with the crocodile happened, many people found Michael to ask him for his thoughts on the situation. They also weren’t shy about asking him for help.
The River is Dangerous
It was well known around all areas of the Nile River that there are dangerous creatures that live in the depths of the water, so people who lived nearby tended to keep their distance. It was mostly in deeper areas of the water where dangerous animals like crocodiles and hippopotamuses lived, and shallower parts of the river were much safer to walk towards.
The locals knew these things and expected their knowledge of the river to keep them safe…
Emerging From the Water
On this fateful day, one crocodile not only made its way out of the riverbed but continued towards land. In all of the years that Michael had lived by the Nile, he had never seen this happen before.
This was obviously a problem, but it signaled that there may be something wrong with the water of the river. Unfortunately, the animal also managed to end up in a pretty bad spot…
It Was Massive
The animal itself was huge. It was at least the size of two or three humans lined up together, but its size wasn’t the only thing that the villagers had to worry about.
The animal had positioned itself directly in the path of the water from the river that the villagers had made to bring water to their farms. They didn’t know how to get the animal out of their way.
The farmers in the area didn’t notice for a while that their water source was obstructed, but they would find out very soon.
The animal was taking up almost the entire pathway of the river water, reducing the flow to just a trickle. If this problem remained in place, the crops for the year would parish, and the village would lose their food.
A Major Discovery
The first people in the area to notice the situation were a few women who often went to the shallow part of the river to wash their family’s clothes. What started out as a routine task grew immediately more dangerous as they saw the large animal in their path.
They then realized that the crocodile was blocking the water’s flow, and they immediately knew who they had to call to get this situation handled.
He Arrived At The Scene
As soon as Michael was told about the crocodile, he immediately sprang into action. He decided it was better not to face the massive creature alone, so he invited friends to be beside him. And once he reached the water’s edge he could tell that the situation would be difficult to handle.
The crocodile was indeed blocking the water, but it seemed like it could still hurt anyone who came near it.
As Michael got closer to the great beast, he realized that there was something wrong with it. The crocodile didn’t seem able to move, even though getting up and out of the water as it did would have taken a great amount of strength.
It seemed like the animal was moving much more slowly than he had seen other crocodiles move, almost as if it was moving in slow motion.
There Were Risks Involved
Michael wracked his brain for a solution to the problem because every viable option seemed completely nonsensical. It didn’t seem possible to move the crocodile, not just because of the dangers involved but because of its massive size.
And pushing it back into the rushing waters of the Nile seemed cruel to the animal that was possibly in pain. There had to be some other way to help the creature and clear the water’s path.
What Are Our Options?
Michael and his friends soon returned to the village to discuss the problems with their community. Ideas floated around from person to person, and the most prominent idea was to kill the animal and dispose of the body.
Michael understood their concerns, but he was personally against this idea. Of course, it could rid them of their problem, but he knew that there was another way to deal with the croc.
He Loved All Creatures
The thought of killing the crocodile saddened Michael, who was taught from a young age to value all life. Living on the farm taught him respect not only for large animals who helped tend to the land but for the smallest creatures who helped pollinate each crop.
Michael knew that the crocodile in their path didn’t deserve to die, and something he saw in the animal made him believe that there was a better solution.
Michael knew more about crocodiles than the average person, and in all of his life, he had never seen a crocodile act that way before.
Even the look in the animal’s eye seemed like a pained expression, so he knew that there must be something that he could do to help it. Michael put his mind to work and thought of someone that he could talk to who might be able to help.
An Unlikely Visitor
A few weeks prior, a visitor had come to the area explaining to Michael’s family how wild animals were dealt with in other parts of the world. He consulted with them because they were having problems with some of their animals on the farm.
Luckily, Michael had his contact information, and decided to reach out to him to see if he had any ideas.
He Made the Call
Michael remembered that the man had worked for a nature conservation charity, and his main goal was to make sure that rare and endangered species were not killed whenever the chance was possible.
Michael knew that if anyone would be on his side in this situation, it would be him. So, he gave the man a call and hoped that he would answer.
He Traveled In From Far Away
Jason, the animal conservationist, had traveled to Sudan from the UK just a few weeks prior. There were many rare species in the area that were biologically important to the area, and he hoped to protect their populations.
Jason wasn’t planning on visiting the area again so soon, but if an animal was in need and he could lend any knowledge to the situation, he was overjoyed to help.
The Situation Excited Him
Unfortunately, the situation progressed so quickly that Jason wasn’t able to take the many days-long trips necessary to get to the remote part of Sudan.
Luckily, Michael was able to get him on a video call so he could help him in any way that he could. Jason was excited just to get a glimpse of the massive animal who he had studied for years.
They Had to Act Fast
A few days was much too long for the villagers to go without the water that they desperately needed, so they would not be able to wait for Jason’s arrival.
Unfortunately, this made them lose confidence in Michael’s plan, and they once again discussed the idea of killing the large animal. After all, who would help them out of this mess?
Time Was of the Essence
The villagers weren’t solely selfish in their reasoning to kill the animal. They wanted to protect their crops, and the crocodile could supply some much-needed meat to the villagers for a while.
An animal of that size was enough to feed a few dozen people, so they thought that their solution was as good as any of Michael’s ideas. But Jason wasn’t out of the picture just yet.
He Would Not Be Ignored
Jason let the villagers know that not only would he help them in any way that he could from afar, but he would even send them packages of food as a reward for not harming the animal if they chose to do so.
He would do anything in his power to save the crocodile. But the villagers wanted to ignore the outsider, and if it wasn’t for Michael’s plan, they would have.
An Incredible Opportunity
Michael was open to the opportunity to do something to help the animal and the village. He was also excited to talk to Jason again, who was interested in helping the village adopt new technologies and bring other positive long-term changes to the area.
Michael wanted to gain the respect of his organization so they could continue to work together in the future, but were the other villagers open-minded enough to agree with him?
Michael knew that killing the animal would solve the problem immediately, but he was more focused on the long-term nature of the situation.
That was just the way that his mind worked. Maybe it was because of his farming knowledge, but he knew that focusing on the long-term bettering of his village was beneficial. After all, his friends always trusted him to make good decisions.
He Needed Time to Think
Because of their trust in him, the villagers sided with Michael even though they had no idea how he was going to solve their problem yet.
Michael didn’t know yet either, and he couldn’t wait for Jason to make a trip to Sudan to make a decision. So, Michael decided to call someone else who might have some insights on the crocodile.
An Expert’s Advice
Jason knew more than most people did about crocodiles, but he didn’t even know how to confront this situation, so he did some research on the top veterinarians in the world.
Not only was he able to locate one, but he was able to schedule a video call with the head veterinarian of a notable animal hospital in the United States, and luckily, she was available within hours.
A Video Examination
Michael was hopeful about the video call because the vet would be able to see the crocodile to make her best assessment. When he got her on the phone, he approached the animal slowly and carefully; after all, he had no idea how much strength the animal still had in it.
He showed the vet every angle of the crocodile and hoped that she would be able to make a proper diagnosis.
Sadly, the video connection was poor, and the doctor had a hard time seeing the crocodile. The footage was blurry and grainy at times, but the doctor had a good guess about what was wrong.
Through the video, she was able to guess the probable cause of the animal’s pain and explain what the issue was to Michael. But she wasn’t able to help him any further.
The Problem Was Clear
The doctor knew pretty quickly into the video call that the problem had to do with the crocodile’s stomach.
There was an unusually large bulge on the animal’s abdomen, and from the location of the bulge, the doctor was able to surmise that there was most likely a blockage in the entrance to the animal’s stomach. And there was only one solution to remove this blockage.
It Must Have Eaten Something Strange
The most likely explanation for the blockage was that the animal ate something that its body could not digest. This then stopped the animal from digesting any food afterward, causing its fatigue and sickness.
Without food, the animal had no energy to move or carry itself. But what was causing the problem, and could Michael really help the animal?
The Right Decision
The doctor let Michael know that the only was to help the animal was to remove the blockage. This would require surgery, which would be pretty straight forward, but could definitely be considered a harrowing experience.
The doctor let Michael know that he could call her during the operation so she could assist him, but Michael was still worried about his ability to go through with the whole thing.
Backlash From His Village
Aside from Michael’s own worries, the other villagers had their own trepidations. They worried about Michael’s ability to do something so intricate involving this very dangerous animal.
All hands would have to be on deck during the surgery, so the villagers couldn’t just sit idly by and wait for Michael to finish the procedure. They would all have to risk their lives, and Michael would understand if they couldn’t go through with it.
He Would Have to Work Alone
Michael needed everyone’s help but in the end, he would have to perform the surgery completely alone. The other villagers would restrain the animal while he worked while others found food to distract the animal in case something should go awry.
But first things first, they had to find the necessary tools they would need to finish the job.
The animal would have to be tied to the ground with ropes, so the villagers set out on finding enough rope to get the job done. They also found large pins to secure the rope to the ground so the animal would be sufficiently still during the procedure.
They couldn’t risk the animal moving around a lot, or many people could be injured in the process.
The Plan Commenced
Luckily, when the villagers started to tie up the animal, it hardly put up a fight. The crocodile had such little energy left in his body, so he couldn’t fight back against the actions of the people.
Michael knew that this was a good sign that he wouldn’t move much during the surgery, but he was still anxious about starting the procedure.
Another man held the camera as Michael began working so he could put his full attention on the animal in front of him. On the other end of the phone call, the veterinarian instructed Michael on each action he should make. ‘
The knife that Michael was using had first been put through fire to kill any bacteria and sharpened so that the animal would feel less pain. And when it was time, Michael made the first incision.
The Search Began
Luckily, the crocodile barely moved as Michael started the surgery. Michael moved slowly because the obstruction was not very deep in the animal’s body.
Following the vet’s orders, he made more incisions that brought him closer to the source of the animal’s pain. Eventually, he reached the animal’s stomach, and the object in question was forced out of the animal’s body.
The Item in Question
Staring Michael in the face was the object that had caused the crocodile so much pain. A bright blue football had been in its stomach, blocking the way of food for days.
Michael hardly had time to wonder about the source of the ball, which certainly hadn’t come from his village, for long before he heard the voice of the veterinarian on the other end of the phone instructing him what to do next.
He Wasn’t Done Yet
Michael discarded the blue ball and set to work on patching the animal’s wounds. He stitched up the tough skin that had been cut open and taped the outer layer of the animal’s leathery skin as much as possible.
The veterinarian continued giving orders to Michael while he focused on the tedious work, and he hoped that the whole ordeal would be over soon.
Every Last Command
Michael followed all of the vet’s instructions down to the tee, knowing that it was best for the animal. While he worked, the other villagers gathered food like old fish and rice to entice the animal back into the water when the time was right.
When they returned from gathering food, others helped the large animal out of his ropes and cut him free.
It Followed Their Lead
The crocodile immediately started moving in a way that it had not been able to before as if it immediately started feeling better after the surgery. The villagers a few feet ahead of him placed the fish they had gathered towards the river’s edge, and the crocodile followed their lead, gobbling up the food they put out for him.
Within minutes, the stream of water was flowing again, and the crops were no longer in danger.
More Good News On the Way
After hanging up with the veterinarian, Michael immediately called Jason to tell him of their successful operation.
Jason was overjoyed at the news and reminded Michael that he would be sending over a large shipment of food and supplies as thanks for his efforts. This made the villagers extremely happy and more proud of Michael than they had ever been before.
A Worthy Risk
Michael had always been brave, but dealing with that crocodile was one of the most harrowing events of his life. Thankfully, the other villagers thanked him and continued to trust in his judgements about the good of their town.
The animal was seen again, in good condition and high spirits, proving that the operation had been an incredible success.