Does This Video Show Crocodiles Invading a Beach in Brazil?

This video was posted by several accounts on Twitter with different claims.  Here, here and here, the post claims that the video shows crocodiles flooding the beach and that the local population is allegedly panicking, supposedly due to volcanic activity. Another post claims that climate change caused the crocodiles to flood the beach.

Background

With climate change affecting more lives around the world each day, the focus is partly on the effects rising temperatures are having on wildlife. The World Wide Fund For Nature estimates that up to half of plants and animals in the world’s most natural places could face extinction if carbon emissions remain uncurbed.

Verification

The video was first shared on August 25, 2022, on Instagram by Pantanal Pesca, the Instagram handle of a fishing store in Campo Grande, Brazil. According to the World Wide Fund, the Pantanal is the world’s largest tropical wetlands and is home to over 10 million caimans: The reptiles visible in the video are  inaccurately referred to as crocodiles.

In another video recorded in Pantanal and uploaded on Facebook in 2011, the caimans are also seen in similarly large numbers on the river banks. This video posted in 2020 also shows a group of caimans basking in the Pantanal.

Claims that the caimans are out of water because of climate change or volcanic activity are rebutted by a research paper titled Emergence Behaviour of Yacare Caimans in the Brazilian Pantanal.

“It is likely that shuttling and apparent basking behaviour have thermoregulatory significance for caimans in cold periods during the day in the dry season,” the research paper reads.

Verdict

Claims that thousands of crocodiles invaded a beach in Brazil are FALSE.

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Thomas Mukhwana

Thomas Mukhwana is a broadcast journalist and fact-checker. He is passionate about storytelling, sustainable development and policy in the African context.