WAKING up one morning to find your crocodile farm has been dubbed “Cambodia’s sickest tourist attraction” by the British tabloid press is not the best way to start the day.
That’s according to Vincent Lim, whose crocodile farm in Siem Reap was hit by a wave of bad publicity last week, prompted by an article in the UK red top The Mirror which reported that tourists can pay to throw live chickens and ducks to his menagerie of over 1,000 crocodiles.
Lim awoke on August 15 to headlines blaring “British holidaymakers throw chickens to be eaten alive by crocodiles at sick tourist attraction” and “ghoulish entertainment sees live birds thrown to their death by shameful, bloodthirsty Brits”.
And he's totally unrepentant.
“Have you ever been to a tiger zoo in China?” he asked, as we walked across a gantry suspended over six pools full of adult crocs, heaped atop one another in the baking mid-afternoon sun.
“They throw cows in there. They feed live cows to tigers. Cows. Now people say: ‘Don’t kill animals by feeding them to other animals live’, but in Cambodia we don’t have that law yet.”
Lim told 7Days he is unperturbed by an undercover report in British tabloid The Mirror that included footage of tourists tossing a chicken over the rails to a pit of crocodiles, as well as a breathless description of the horrors to be found inside his crocodile farm.
Walking past signs posted along the railings of his crocodile pits which offer visitors the option of paying $10 to throw in a live chicken or $6 to throw a duck, Lim said the offer is there to provide extra entertainment to visitors, few of whom actually take him up on the deal.
“It’s just for tourists. They like to see more action from the crocodiles. When you throw in something live the crocodiles have more action, they go and bite the thing. There is no law in Cambodia against it; if they come out with one, then we will have to follow it.”
Tourists paying the $3 entry fee to visit the farm, plus extra to chuck chickens to their deaths, are only a small part of the overall business, Lim told 7Days. His farm is primarily concerned with raising and selling baby crocodiles to overseas buyers.
“We have 600 adult crocodiles and 400 aged between one year and eight years. We sell the young crocodiles to China, Vietnam and Singapore, where they breed them for between one to three years and then kill them for their skin and meat. All those countries buy from the Cambodian breeders because it’s cheaper. In other countries they can’t afford to grow crocodiles big, because they don’t have the food for them to eat.”
While Lim’s crocodiles may occasionally dine on duck if a bloodthirsty backpacker wants to shell out $6, their primary dietary staple is fish, and a lot of it.
“An adult crocodile doesn’t eat every day, and even if you throw them food they don’t necessarily eat. They eat once every 10 days. This month it’s been very expensive because they don’t have much fish in the market.”
Pointing to a particularly large specimen sunning itself by the pool, Lim continued: “Like this big one, one of them eats four to five kilograms each, every 10 days. All up, they eat around 2,500 kilograms of fish. A kilogram of fish costs 70 cents so each time I have to spend around $1,700 to $1,800 to feed them. This month is more expensive than usual, but I think in October the price of fish will go down a little bit.”
Lim’s crocodile farm is unusual in that its land and buildings, as well as the crocodiles themselves, are all owned by the government, which leased the business to his father in 1998.
“We’ve heard the Khmer Rouge used to throw people in for the crocodiles to eat, it’s something we’ve heard many times,” he explained during a leisurely stroll around the crocodile pens.
What if the farm’s rumoured history ever repeated itself, I asked Lim. What would happen if someone actually did fall in?
“Lets say there’s an accident, and you fall over there,” Lim explained, pointing to a small patch of grey concrete surrounded by a mass of snoozing crocodiles.
“They’re not going to do anything. But just make sure you don’t fall into the water. If you do, there’s a 99 percent chance they’ll eat you. And if they bite anything that’s bigger than their mouth, something which they cannot swallow, then they’re going to spin. They’re going to spin you around underwater, and if they spin you, you’re dead.”
“But,” he added reassuringly, “in Cambodia it happens very rarely. This year I heard about an accident at a farm in Kampong Chhnang or Kampong Thom, where the crocodiles bit a man on the head and hands. But that man’s still alive, and that’s the only accident this year.”
The farm employs seven workers who venture into the crocodile pits as part of their job. Lim explained their safety precautions.
“You just need a big stick to hit them on the head and make them run into the water. But make sure you don’t go in the water. Sometimes the crocodiles will spin and kill each other in there. They fight sometimes, and sometimes they eat each other too. Of the 600 big ones, each year at least five to 10 die from fighting.
“Most of them die between January and April because that’s [mating] season. In those months … there’s a lot of dead [crocodiles].”
It is a practice he tries to discourage: “If one is dead from fighting you cannot do anything with it,” he said.
Apart from being dismembered by their mates, farm crocodiles are also at risk of disease, which Lim told 7Days he tries to prevent by feeding his animals more regularly than other breeders.
With his family’s 15-year lease on the farm set to expire in 2016, Lim said he’s not sure whether he will bid for the government to extend it.
Having taken over management of the farm from his father three years ago, Lim has since used the experience to set up a private crocodile farming business of his own, and said that breeding crocodiles is in his family’s blood.
“This crocodile farm is unusual because it’s government-owned and the only one open to tourists. I have another farm of my own but you have to have a licence from the government to open for tourists. The government doesn’t allow anyone else to do it. In Siem Reap we have 500 families with crocodiles, but they can’t open for tours. They only grow them as a family business.”
I was looking for a new flat to stay but found this post instead. I found this very funny and decided to share it with you. I bet you probably want to live with this guy.
Konichiwa bitches. Are you looking for the most kick-ass fucking roommate that ever lived? If so, look no further. You fucking found him. I'm a 25-year-old professional marketing agent with experience at bad-ass companies in New York Fucking City. That's right! What you know about experience? I graduated from Auburn University in Alabama, and moved to NYC at the ripe, tender age of 22. After deciding that New York was a stinky shit-hole, I moved back to Alabama to cultivate more professional experience. Why? So I can make millions of dollars and not have to post shit like this on Craigslist.
Anyway, so I landed this job with a marketing firm in San Francisco, and I have no fucking clue where to live. Honestly, I'm moving there in 3 weeks, so I don't give a shit if I have to sleep in your bathtub.
A bit about me: I'm respectful, quiet, clean and I won't bother any of your shit. If you leave shit out, I'm just like, "Oh fuck I better not mess with this shit, because it's not mine." I turn off lights. I clean toilets. Fuck it. I'll even cook for you. That's right! My dad is a chef and taught me everything there is to know about cooking southern cajun cuisine. I'll fry green tomatoes, cover them with marinated crab meat and smother that shit in bearnaise. EVERY. GODDAMN. NIGHT. Don't eat meat? That's fucking FANTASTIC! I'll make a zucchini and yellow squash carpaccio that will knock your fucking socks off.
I also read a lot. I fucking LOVE books. Vonnegut, Palahniuk, Hawthorne. All that shit. I read Tuesday's with Morrie the other day. It's a sad story, but I learned something about life, love, knowledge and the pursuit of something greater than myself. Fucking smart. Do you like movies? I fucking love them. We can watch the shit out of some movies together if you like, or go get drinks, or work out, hike, play video games or play a game of one-on-one basketball, or I don't have to talk to you at all. It's completely UP TO YOU!
Sometimes I play guitar. Are you going to love getting baked and listening to Bob Dylan and Pink Floyd? LIVE? WHENEVER THE FUCK YOU WANT? Of course you are! I'll take requests and learn any song you like, because I have the voice of an angel and the acoustical stylings of James Fucking Taylor. AWWWWWW SHIT YEA!
A lot of people ask me, "Hey, you're from Alabama. Are you racist?" And, the answer to that question is, no. I'm not racist or judgmental at all. I love everyone. I'm a secular humanist. I FUCKING LOVE PEOPLE. That's the only requirement to being a secular humanist actually. You have to like other human beings and want to help them for no other reason than they are human regardless of race, religion or sexual preference. WTF?!!!? Pretty fucking cool right?
I own almost nothing! I'm driving my car from Alabama to California in which I'll be transporting two duffelbags of clothes, one laptop computer, one guitar, one cell-phone with charger, 8 pairs of shoes, one picture frame, probably some condoms and a shitload of beef jerky and Pringles for the trip. Though, you can expect the jerky to be gone upon my arrival. Unless you'd like me to pick up some on my way into the city. See?! I'm the most considerate person you've ever met. I'm offering to buy you shit already!
Am I interested in your pad? You can bet my nomadic ass I am! I only require 4 walls, a ceiling and a floor to shelter me from the elements. Other than that, anything else will be considered a convenient plus. I'm taking being a roommate to the next level. Email me! I'll hook yo ass up with Facebook links, background checks, credit reports, phone numbers, resumes, references, awards, sexual history, pictures of karate trophies and a list of the top 10 women I'd like to bang before I die. If you want a next-generation roommate who consistently blows your fucking mind with awesomeness, then hit me up. I'm ready to give you money.
If you plan to go to Cambodia for a holiday, you should not go pass Angkor Wat which is the heart of Cambodia, located in Siem Reap city. Frankly, even I'm myself Cambodian and have been to Angkor Wat a couple times but never realized how wonderful it is. This documentary really digs the truth and presents a magnificent history about Angkor Wat. It really is truly amazing!
"Abstain For The Game", this phrase is rather short and precise but when it appears on New Zealand TV3 first time, it has roared up the nation and taken New Zealanders by storm. Its controversy is wide spread not only in New Zealand but also Australia, the US and some other European countries. Cambell live program also did a poll on whether or not people will abstain for the game. Guess what the result is 85% No, 15% Yes. So..... Clearly, this is a failed campaign and has been ridiculed by our neighbor, Aussie....But the question is how it is possible that such a big company like Telecom produced such an embarrassment campaign!
This song just does not make any sense to me but I kind of like its music. And who does not like Friday???:)
Here's the lyrics:
A Chinese girl rap me with this fight:
"Cambodian ass need more slap/as I told you to rap another rap/maybe you can only wrap /pussy can make a nice wrap/failed rap can become a big wrap/wrap a big wrap and snap your wrap/rap a crap rap and eat your crap/don’t just sit in front of your lap/don’t hide under your cap/otherwise you will take my crap/this make you no where to step/now you are under my trap/u need to go home learn some rap/ I will buy you a big map/now you believe I can rap/you and I have a big gap!"
And I slapped her with this sharp knife:
I believe this is what you write--because It just simply isn't right-- the meaning is just fucking dire-- and I don't understand the reason why-- better education is the way to go by-- preparation is a better supply-- and your fucking brain should be revived (hahaha.....)-- new consideration should be conspired-- next time when you try-- have a think at least a fortnight-- new resolution is a better reply-- otherwise your rap is just in denail-- embarrassment will take over your pride-- Anger runs through your entire-- acceptance will be denied-- because rhyme isn't complied-- before putting up a fight-- at least try to learn samurai-- because you and I-- you and I....-- you just ain't wise (hahahaha)
But you have been admired-- realization occurs as hindsight-- your ability to rap is fucking recognized-- the inspiration's shed me some light-- my reply is to show you why-- and you should be honored for your whole life (hahhhaha)-- although I believe a mentor is by your side-- because rap doesn't just come to your fucking brain overnight-- now I'll give you a chance to redeem your life-- otherwise you won't survive-- say something that Cambodia is nice-- maybe I consider to buy-- Or blog your script with the copywright-- Or have your writing cited-- I would appreciate what you decide-- now this is enough to make you cry-- and I wait till your tear runs dry-- otherwise emotion runs high-- and you resort to commit suicide (I'm scared)-- I have no chance of getting reply-- because........you just ain't wise.....(hahaha....)