Crocodiles "turn on humans" in parched Baluchestan

Crocodiles in rural Iran have turned on the humans, reports the BBC, after habitat disruption caused by water shortages. Alarmed locals are even feeding them directly, lest they come wandering hungry into the villages.

The attacks have come at a time when Iran has been suffering acute water shortages and, consequentially, fast-shrinking natural habitats have seen the gandos' food supplies dry up. The starving animals treat humans approaching their territory either as prey or a menace to their evaporating resources. Scattered across Iran and the Indian subcontinent, gandos are broad-snouted crocodiles, classed as "vulnerable" by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). Iran has an estimated 400, comprising nearly 5% of the species. Iran's Department of Environment says it is doing its utmost to strike a balance between preserving the gandos and protecting local people.

I like how the BBC's term, "turn on humans", implies a betrayal of established arrangements. Compare to Werner Herzog on our sentimental fantasies of kinship with animals: "I see no understanding, no mercy, only the overwhelming indifference of nature."