You may have seen all sorts of weird friendships between humans and wild animals, but it sounds a little too many to get along with the giant wild crocodile.
But life is important to this kind person from Costa Rica, and he was in a hurry to save the unfortunate creature when he found a severely injured crocodile sick on the river bank.
What happened next is the greatest friendship that humans and wildlife can ever share!
Gilbert “Cito” Shedden, a local fisherman and nature lover in the town of Siquirres in the province of Limon, Costa Rica, first met the crocodile Pacho in 1989.
The 1,200-pound reptile was on the banks of the Leventason Parismina River, and its fate appeared to be sealed after being seriously injured by the rancher.
But Gilbert decided to bring him back to good health, so he grabbed a giant creature, put it in his boat, and brought it to his house.
For the next six months, friendly fishermen took care of helpless crocodiles as if they were their own children. Chito gave his new friend over £ 65 a day of meat to help him fully recover. But for that, Pacho needed more than just food!
“The food wasn’t enough. The crocodile needed my love to regain the will to live,” Chito told the Tycho Times. “Not everyone is bad, so I just wanted someone to feel like they love him.”
Thanks to the love and comfort received from the caregiver, Pacho’s condition improved significantly, and when the time came, Chito decided to return him to the wild. But, surprisingly, the crocodile simply refused to leave the man who showed him so kindness.
From that moment on, the two were inseparable. Two friends spent every day with a rescued crocodile living in a pond next to Gilbert’s house … the next 22 years!
The couple even achieved worldwide fame in the 2000s when they starred in a documentary called “The Man Who Swims with Crocodyl”. For over a decade, Chito and his best friend Pacho have performed for tourists in the artificial lake of Finca Tilapia.
It sounds unbelievable to anyone that a man can swim and play with a giant crocodile, but Chito was never afraid that his buddy would hurt him.
“Something might happen in a few years … but after 22 years of love, nothing happened, so I don’t think so,” the man said.
The friendly crocodile died of natural causes on October 12, 2011. It is believed to be over 60 years old. But his inspiring friendship with the man who saved his life will last forever.