• Short Summary

    The village of Sabou, in Upper Volta, has long had a custom of keeping sacred alligators--to protect the villagers against warring tribes, to bring rain for the crop and a plentiful harvest.

  • Description

    1.
    GV PAN Grass huts of village & market place (2 shots)
    0.13

    2.
    CU Sign pointing to sacred alligator pool
    0.16

    3.
    LV Alligator pool
    0.21

    4.
    SV Village boys at edge of water
    0.22

    5.
    MV Alligator near shore.
    0.27

    6.
    SV Four village boys washing clothes near water's edge
    0.30

    7.
    CU Alligator disturbed by branch thrown at it swims off
    0.42

    8.
    GV Hens tethered by leg for use as bait (3 shots)
    0.53

    9.
    SV, MV & CU Boy teases alligator with chicken (3 shots)
    1.17

    10.
    SV & CU Alligator snaps at chicken and bites (4 shots)
    1.44

    11.
    SV Alligator catches chicken on string
    1.50

    12.
    SV Boy in water holds alligator by tail then releases it.
    1.58



    Initials LD/JF/BB/2221 LD/JF/BB/2313



    Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved

    Background: The village of Sabou, in Upper Volta, has long had a custom of keeping sacred alligators--to protect the villagers against warring tribes, to bring rain for the crop and a plentiful harvest. Today, the fifty alligators which live in the local pool, are more of a tourist attraction than a religious symbol -- but they still lead a very good life.

    Local Children are so accustomed to the reptiles, that they even wash their clothes in the alligators' pool--or tease the huge animals with branches and stones.

    In days gone by, the alligators were fed on sheep and hares-sacrificed in solemn ceremonies by the Village Chiefs. Their meals now are chickens, which the children tie to a string and a dangle before the alligators to make them snap their mighty jaws while trying to catch the morsels.

    The alligators, whose powerful tail could break a man's back with a flick, are most playful in their game of "catch the chicken" -- but the local children know that they must keep on their toes not to slip during the feeding, or the game could quickly turn into a tragedy.

    Once they have eaten, through, the alligators are almost docile--and the boys can actually hold them by their trails and drag them back into the swamp.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVAD1GDGCQUGUA3ISSSWYMB5LOXO
    Media URN:
    VLVAD1GDGCQUGUA3ISSSWYMB5LOXO
    Group:
    Reuters - Source to be Verified
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    16/11/1970
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Colour
    Duration:
    00:01:59:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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