Crocodylus Niloticus, or more commonly called Nile Crocodile, is a staple in the exotic leather industry for bags, shoes, and leather goods.
Its popularity has increased in recent years due to the increased demand of all crocodile and alligator skins. The Nile crocodile originates from Africa, and we buy only farm raised skins from Zimbabwe and South Africa. Each skin is individually tagged, graded, and measured before being shipped to our tannery in a raw, wet-salted state.
Once the precious skins arrive in our facility, we re-sort, grade, and measure the skins before tanning them into beautiful leather.
Nile crocodile skins are similar to American alligator skins in many ways, but they differ in several areas. A few of the noticable differences:
Nile crocodile skins contain a tiny follicle in each scale. These follicles are natural and are specific to crocodile crocodile skins.
Nile crocs have narrow tails and small heads as compared to the alligator, thus cutting yields are less. Nile crocodiles have an extra row of bones on the side of the belly, which can also comprimise cutting yields.
Nile crocodiles have a more symetrical pattern in the belly area. Scales on a crocodile are more square shaped on the edges, as opposed to alligators which tend to be more rounded on the edges of the tiles.
Nile crocodiles are sometimes preferred to alligators in glazed finish because the internal fiber structure of crocodiles is tighter than alligator, thus creating a better "break" in the skins. Conversely, alligators are preferred for softer finishes, like garments and soft bags and boots.
In general, the Nile crocodile is used as a substitute for American alligator by many design houses all over the world. The prices for the 2 species are comparable, and the skins are very similar, so when one species is not available in a certain size/grade, we offer to substitute one over the other.
Typically we stock Nile crocodile skins from sizes from 20 cm up to 39 cm. We carry grades 1, 2, and 3 and very rarely grade 4 or 5.