© 2017 by Croc Fest Working Group

The night of the first concept of Croc Fest.  Barbecue organized by Bruce Shwedick.  Thanks to Bruce for getting people to come together.  Great Idea!

July 2009

2010

June 11, 2010

This event was Barbecue for the Crocs at the time.  The Beneficiary was the Chinese Alligator for Joe Abene.  Bruce Shwedick brings a chinese alligator.  Many people assist in catching a large adult alligator. David Day and his family at Crocodile Creek Bio Center hosted the 1st annual event.  Auction and admissions falls short of making $1000.00  Some great guys pitched in to make it an even $1000.00.

June 25, 2011 and December 8, 2011

The Beneficiary was the Philllipine Crocodile.  This year we held 2 Croc Fests.  Summer Croc Fest and Christmas Croc Fest.  Shawn Heflick and his family hosted the 2 events.  With the enthusiasm of Bruce, Shawn, Colette and Flavio the momentum was galloping like a Cuban Crocodile.  The Summer Croc Fest had generated $4000.00 and the Christmas Croc Fest reached $9000.00.  This was tremendous growth.  Each of the Organizers pitched in to buy all the food, drinks and other expenses to ensure that all funds that came from the gathered people went to Crocodile Conservation, 100%.  

"Coming together to Save Crocodiles"

June 23, 2012

 June 23, 2012 and December 8th, 2012

Constantly breaking down new barriers was another big jump in raising the funds in 2012. we had the Summer Croc Fest at Reptile World Serpentarium and beneficiary the was the Siamese Crocodile in Cambodia, raising $9000 again.  It was a hot day  but alot of fun.  The Christmas Croc Fest was held at Shawn Heflick's facility in Palm Bay, FL.  Benefiting the Orinoco Crocodile in Colombia this time raising $15,000.  CrocFest is getting more organized and planning for CrocFests around the  World.  

"Save the Crocs" is coined as our slogan

YA MON!!

 

Jamaican Crocodiles were the benefactor this year for both CrocFests.  The Summer CrocFest was hosted
 by World Renowned Venom Expert George van Horn at Reptile World Serpentarium in St. Cloud, Florida.  Jamaican Food, Live Jamaican band and once again heat.  The tradition continues as Christmas CrocFest was Held at Shawn and Jen Heflick's facility in Palm Bay, Florida.  Both events raised $26,000.  

 

Publications

2014

CANADIANS JOIN SUMMER CROCFEST 2014, AND NEW FUNDRAISING RECORD SET. Summer CrocFest 2014 took place on 28 June 2014 at Carl Bardenʼs Reptile Discovery Center in DeLand, Florida, USA, attracting 175 attendees and raising $US18,000. Event organizers were: Colette Adams (General Curator, Gladys Porter Zoo); Curt Harbsmeier (Executive Board Member, Tampaʼs Lowry Park Zoo); Shawn Hefl ick (General Curator, Central Florida Zoo; Director, Crocodile Manor); and, Flavio Morrissiey (Director, Gator Adventure Productions). 

CHRISTMAS CROC FEST 2014 - A FESTIVAL FOR CROCODILIAN CONSERVATION. Christmas Croc Fest 2014 took place on 6 December 2014 at Crocodile Manor, Shawn Heflick’s facility, in Palm Bay, Florida, USA. It attracted ~200 people and raised a new record of $US35,000! The beneficiary was designated as the Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis), which continues to be listed as Critically Endangered and is considered the rarest crocodile in the world.  Event organizers were: Shawn Heflick (Director, Crocodile Manor); Curt Harbsmeier (Executive Board Member, Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo); Flavio Morrissiey (Director, Gator Adventure Productions); and, Colette Adams (General Curator, Gladys Porter Zoo). All are members of the IUCNSSC Crocodile Specialist Group. Proceeds will support two conservation efforts for Philippine crocodiles - one project in northern Luzon at the extreme northern part of the species’ range, and one project based out of Mindanao in the south.

Publication

2015

SUMMER CROCFEST 2015 RAISES $US23,000 FOR GHARIALS. Summer CrocFest 2015 took place on 27 June 2015, at the Everglades Alligator Farm in Homestead, Florida, USA, near the entrance to the world famous Everglades National Park. The event attracted 150 supporters and raised $US23,000 for Gharial (Gavialis gangeticus) research. Proceeds are being directed to the continued efforts of Dr. Jeff Lang, the Senior Scientific Advisor for the Madras Crocodile Bank Trust and the Gharial Conservation Alliance. Thanks to the generosity of private and corporate sponsors and zoos, over the last 6 years CrocFests have raised over $US140,000 for endangered crocodilians.

At CrocFest, organizors announced the creation of the Ralf Sommerlad Crocodile Conservation Award, in honor or Ralf Sommerlad, who passed away recently. See following article for details on the award.

RALF SOMMERLAD CROCODILE CONSERVATION AWARD ESTABLISHED BY CROCFEST. The organizers of CrocFest are pleased to formally announce the recipient of the inaugural Ralf Sommerlad Crocodile Conservation Award: Virginia Aquarium (Mark Swingle and Chip Harshaw). This prestigious award was created by CrocFest organizers following the untimely death of our friend and colleague, Ralf Sommerlad, in June this year. The award was presented at Christmas CrocFest 2015 (5 December 2015)

Colette Adams, Curt Harbsmeier, Shawn Heflick and Flavio Morrissiey, CrocFest organisors.

Christmas CrocFest 2015, held at Crocodile Manor (Shawn Heflick’s home) in Palm Bay, Florida, USA, on 5 December 2015. Some 150 attendees, as well as many other sponsors and supporters, helped raise over $US34,000 for the African slender-snouted crocodile, Mecistops cataphractus (conservation work conducted by Dr. Matt Shirley).

2016

Summer CrocFest 2016  Saturday, June 11, 2016 from 2:30 pm to 9:00 pm was hosted by Outback Oasis* in Winter Haven, Florida, along the I-4 Corridor between Tampa and Orlando. Proceeds raised at this summer’s event will benefit the Chinese alligator, Alligator sinensis, one of the world’s most critically endangered crocodilians with fewer than 150 animals left in the wild.

Proceeds will be directed to Dr. Steven Platt, WCS Herpetologist for Southeast Asia and China, who is reviving and coordinating the Chinese alligator reintroduction project in the Anhui Province, China. See below for details. 
Event organizers are: Colette Adams, General Curator - Gladys Porter Zoo; Curt Harbsmeier, Executive Board Member – Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo; Flavio Morrissiey, Director – You Name It Tours; and Shawn Heflick, CEO - Crocodile Conservation International. All are members of the IUCN-SSC Crocodile Specialist Group. The event raised $22,000

Christmas CrocFest 2016 took place on Saturday, December 3, 2016 from noon until 11:00 pm at Crocodile Manor, Shawn Heflick’s facility, in Palm Bay, Florida. Proceeds raised at this year's event will benefit the critically endangered Orinoco crocodile, Crocodylus intermedius, in Venezuela. Funds will be directed to Alvaro Velasco B. and Fauna Silvestre Productos y Servicios to assist the Crocodile Specialist Group of Venezuela in launching a renewed conservation initiative, including the determination of the current population of Orinoco crocodiles in Venezuela. See below for project details. Event organizers are: Shawn Heflick, Director – Crocodile Manor; Curt Harbsmeier, Executive Board Member – Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo; Flavio Morrissiey, Operations Director – You Name It Tours; and Colette Adams, General Curator - Gladys Porter Zoo. Joe Wasilewski, noted field biologist and frequent Nat Geo contributor, will assist as auctioneer and co-champion for this cause. All are members of the IUCN-SSC Crocodile Specialist Group.

The Ralf Sommerlad Award went to Peter Brazitis

The event raised $32,000.


 

2017

Summer CrocFest June 24, 2017 Busch Wildlife Sanctuary Benefitting Cuban Crocodile, which raised

46 thousand dollars and Austrailian CrocFest Territory Wildlife Park June 17th Benefitting  two projects focusing on managing human-crocodile conflict throughout the Asian-Pacific: Saltwater Crocodiles (Crocodylus porosus) in East Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia, and Mugger Crocodiles (Crocodylus palustris) in Gujarat, India, which raised over 2 thousand dollars.

Adam Britton, PhD and Brandon Sideleau, creators of the CrocBITE crocodile attack database, have proposed a comprehensive project which aims to better understand human-crocodile conflict in East Nusa Tengarra, Indonesia by conducting surveys in conjunction with the BKSDA (Forestry Department) to better understand the plight of the people living alongside crocodiles and to then use the information to mitigate further conflict. Indonesia currently has the highest human-crocodile conflcit rates relative to its size, with 74 reported attacks and 37 fatalaties in 2017 alone. The province of East Nusa Tengarra is currently the site of the greatest number of recorded attacks. 

Soham Mukherjee, a well-respected conservationist from Ahmedabad, India, has been instrumental in the current conservation efforts of the Gharial (Gavialis gangeticus). He has proposed a comprehensive project which aims to better understand human-crocodile conflict in Gujarat, India. This will be accomplished by utilizing radio telemetry systems and direct oberservations to map Mugger Crocodile (Crocodylus palustris) movements in human-dominated ecosystems. This information will be used to generate a manual for crocodile management program in Gujarat and to provide educational programs which focus on living alongside crocodilians, raising awareness, and providing training on how to safely capture, transport and rehabilitate crocodiles.

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