Workers at a Ukrainian aquarium didn’t believe it when a visitor said a crocodile swallowed her phone. Then the reptile started ringing.
Gena, the 14-year-old croc, noshed on the Nokia after Rimma Golovko dropped it in the water.
She had stretched out her arm, trying to snap a photo of Gena opening his mouth, when the phone slipped.
“This should have been a very dramatic shot, but things didn’t work out,” she said.
Employees were sceptical when Golovko told them what happened.
“But then the phone started ringing and the sound was coming from inside our Gena’s stomach and we understood she wasn’t lying,” said an employee.
Since then, Gena has been refusing food and acting listless. He also won’t play with three fellow African crocodiles, despite being the leader in the group.
Doctors tried to whet the crocodile’s appetite this week by feeding him live quail rather than the pork or beef he usually gets once a week.
The quail were injected with vitamins and a laxative, but while Gena smothered one bird, he didn’t eat it.
Dnipropetrovsk chief veterinarian Oleksandr Shushlenko said the crocodile will be taken for an X-ray next week if he continues to refuse food. Surgically removing the phone would be a last resort, he said, since incisions and stitches usually take at least three weeks to heal in reptiles and the procedure is dangerous for the animal and the vets.
Golovko does want to get back the phone’s SIM card, which holds her precious photos and contacts.