The Crocodile ZOO arose from the private breeding of Miroslav Procházka, who had been concerned with the crocodiles from his young age. He attended the children group Station of Young Naturalists in Písek, where they kept two crocodiles. He founded his own breeding at his ecological farm in Chvalšiny in 1996, when he got a couple of caimans. He started building his comprehensive collection of crocodile species in 2000 and he has been successfully reproducing the crocodiles since 2005. Since 2005, he has been building the exhibition part of the ZOO in the centre of Protivín, in the historic stone barn of a former stables and a carriage house (former a hospital). It was a part of the Schwarzenberg castle in Protivín, which is situated at the opposite side of the square. He bought the building from the descendants of the private owner of carpentry being in the building. He obtained the ZOO licence according to Act No. 162/2003 Coll. from the Ministry of Environment of the Czech Republic in May 2008 on the basis of his application of the same year. The date of ZOO origin is the 1st June 2008. By 2008 there was built the ecological technology of the heating using the heat pumps and there were also built first 11 terrariums out of a total of 30 planned. From June 2008 the large terrariums were built and the terrariums in the first floor had been done until 2012. The target purpose is to exhibit all of 23 lived crocodile species and to complement this exposition with an exhibition of osteological preparations and in lesser part also dermoplatical preparations of not only of crocodiles, but also of mammals and other vertebrates. From the breeding point of view the aim is to put together the breeding groups of endangered and critically endangered species of crocodiles both in ZOO and on the farm.
2008 - Thousands of visitors
In 2008 there were 16 thousand visitors in the ZOO, in 2009 already 26 thousand visitors and. In 2010 the ZOO was visited by 36,5 thousand people, but the capacity of the ZOO is not such big to satisfy all of the interested person of the visit.
2009 - Building new large terrariums
In 2009 Miroslav Procházka, owner of the ZOO, published the Atlas of Crocodiles. From the proceeds of the sale, he supports the creations of the reserve in Borneo – Lake Mesangat – for preservation of the origin population of False Gharial (Tomistoma schlegelii) and Siamese crocodile (Crocodylus siamensis). In 2010 the ZOO received a subsidy of CZK 34,6 million for a reconstruction at a planned price of CZK 47,3 million. The reconstruction of the building and the building of new large terrariums were supported by fund EU – ROP Southwest in the years 2012 – 2015. Thanks to that, the number of the exposition terrariums increased to twenty-six (the biggest one has 120m2) and other species of the crocodiles were added.
2017 - Reproduction of Indian Gharial
he Crocodile ZOO arose from the private breeding of Miroslav Procházka, who had been concerned with the crocodiles from his young age. He attended the children group Station of Young Naturalists in Písek, where they kept two crocodiles. He founded his own breeding at his ecological farm in Chvalšiny in 1996, when he got a couple of caimans. He started building his comprehensive collection of crocodile species in 2000 and he has been successfully reproducing the crocodiles since 2005.
2018 - Extended exhibition
Since 2018 the ZOO was extended its exposition of the exhibition of white crocodiles, so that the visitors can see the albino American alligators and unique leucines of Nile crocodile and False gharial.
2020 - 23 species of crocodiles
In 2020 our ZOO exhibited already 23 species of crocodiles and there were more than 60 thousand visitors per year.
2021 - Supporting the Gharial Ecology Project
In 2021 our ZOO started supporting the Gharial Ecology Project led by prof. Jeff Lang. We support the locality Chambal River Sanctuary in India, where the Indian gavials bred in the ZOO Protivín come from.