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Last Updated: Thursday September 27 2007 07:37 GMT

Homesick crocs stun scientists

A saltwater crocodile

Three homesick crocodiles have stunned scientists after making an epic journey of hundreds of kilometres.

Saltwater crocs in Australia are often taken somewhere else if they live near beaches or rivers, so scientists looked at what happened after they were moved.

They fitted the crocs with tracking devices and were amazed when one made its way home, more than 400km away.

Now it seems officials may stop moving crocodiles away from their homes, as they keep swimming their way back.

Researchers said the results of their study were "staggering".

Three other crocodiles who were also tagged by scientists and taken away from their homes made similar huge return journeys.

How do they do it?

Now the scientists will try to find out how the crocodiles have such a good idea of where they are and how to get home.

One theory is that they know their way home a bit like birds do, and use smell and magnetic fields to help them know the way home.

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