Guinness World Records declared the gigantic creature, which was blamed for a series of deadly attacks, to be the largest saltwater crocodile in captivity in the world, the Associated Press reported.
In the farming town of Bunawan, which has a population of 37,000, the residents celebrated. However, Mayor Edwin Cox Elorde said that he was concerned other giant crocodiles might be lurking nearby.
There were mixed feelings, Elorde said by telephone, the Associated Press reported. We're really proud because it proves the rich biodiversity of our place but at the same time, there are fears that Lolong may not be alone.
The Guinness listing is based on the views of several experts in the field of zoology. Adam Britton, a crocodile zoologist, measured the large beast at the new Bunawan Eco-Park and Research Centre, reported National Geographic.
I didn't expect to ever see a crocodile greater than 20 feet long in my lifetime, not an experience I will forget easily, blogged Britton, senior partner of the Australia-based crocodilian research and consulting group Big Gecko.
Suspected of attacking several local residents, the giant reptile was captured alive in September. Weighing 2,370 pounds and measuring 20.24 feet from head to tail, Lolong has become the main attraction of a new ecotourism park in the outskirts of Bunawan. Since its capture, Lolong has drawn thousands of visitors. Elorde said that his town earned 3 million pesos, the AP reported.
The previous captive record-holder was about a 17.97-feet-long crocodile from Australia.
In September, about 100 people pulled the crocodile from a creek using a rope,. It was then hoisted on a truck bed using a crane, Sky News reported.
However, villagers still claim they saw a large crocodile nearby. They are still concerned and will not fish at night. Another team of hunters has formed and are seeking government permission to hunt another possible threat.