The UK's fastest-growing regional news network
16°C | 8°C
14°C | 4°C
15°C | 4°C
See the full forecast for your area.
Sponsored by Britelite.
Home Gravesend News Article
A former football manager who shares his bungalow with a 6ft crocodile is appealing for a mate for his reptile pal.
Chris Weller, 67 – who used to manage Gravesend and Northfleet FC, now Ebbsfleet United – bought croc Caesar eight years ago when he was less than 1ft long.
He has since spent more than £20,000 converting his home so his pet can roam free – including fitting a 9ft pool in the conservatory.
But the sharp-toothed reptile is now nearly 6ft long and has recently started bellowing at the top of his lungs in a bid to attract a mate.
In the past few weeks he has upped his search for love and now makes the deafening noise, which sounds like a car starting, every few minutes.
Mr Weller, who has even moved into his loft to let Caesar have the run of his home, said his pet wants a mate.
He said: “He is shouting for a little friend but he’s not likely to get one round here. It sounds like a car starting up and he makes it every few minutes.
“He just started it this year and it shows that he is more of an adult now. I’m licensed for two crocodiles, but the difficulty comes in matching them up size-wise.
“They really have to be the same size and it is difficult to get your hands on a 5ft or 6ft crocodile.
“The shops don’t really stock them like that – they stock them as babies.
“If someone did come across a female adult that was in need of a new home, I know Caesar would appreciate it. He’s got enough room for another one.”
Mr Weller, who lives in Strood, had to apply for a dangerous animal licence in order to keep Caesar and has to comply with hygiene, diet and security requirements.
His home has a sophisticated lock system to prevent the crocodile from escaping and he had CCTV installed which he can watch from upstairs.
Caesar’s species can live for 40 years and reach 7ft.
Mr Weller – who also has water monitors, terrapin turtles, parrots, lizards and wood pigeons – said he would not dream of having conventional pets.
“I’ve never wanted to get a cat or a dog,” he said. “When you have a home to yourself you think ‘well, why not?’ – and just go for it.”
Click here for more news from Gravesend.
Click here for more news from around the county.