The Criadero de Cocodrilos in Boca de Guamá is a crocodile breeding facility maintained by the Ministerio de Industrias Pesqueras.
The Criadero de Cocodrilos raises two species of crocodiles: the indigenous Cuban crocodile, or Crocodylus rhombifer, and its American counterpart the American crocodile, or Crocodylus acutus. The program was established in 1962, and many consider it to be the first environmental protection action to be taken by Cuba’s revolutionary government. Before the program's founding, the two crocodile species were almost extinct.
A Visit With the Crocodiles
The facility offers guided tours that take visitors through the various breeding stages as well as the program’s roles in the breeding process. The tour also takes its visitors through various swamps to get a more immediate look at these intriguing yet evasive creatures, and people may see crocodiles in differing stages of development. Although it will not be truly authentic, the tour also allows you to see the crocodiles enjoying some snacks when the breeders throw them some tasty delights.
Interestingly, the breeding program has become so successful that visitors to the facility can legally purchase stuffed baby crocodiles or dine on crocodile steaks. Of course, if you happen to purchase any crocodile souvenirs, ask for an invoice to verify the purchase that may seem suspicious at customs due to its controversial nature.