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Why Crocodile Does Not Eat Hen

Why Crocodile Does not Eat Hen

Why Crocodile Does Not Eat Hen

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Why Crocodile Does Not Eat Hen

November 2, 2023


African Folktale 

Imagine you were a hen and you just came face to face with a crocodile who was wanting to eat you up.  What would you say to the crocodile to stop him? 

Hello everyone.  I’m Kathleen Pelley.  Welcome to Journey with Story.  Today’s episode is an old African folktale about just that – a hen who meets a crocodile and is able to say something that stops him from eating here.  Now what on earth could she say that would stop him?  Let’s find out. 

Oh, before we begin – a big thank you to Vitoria who sent me a lovely drawing inspired by our story How the Whale Got His Throat.  What a good job you did, Vitoria.  If you want to see it, you can go to and hit the BLOG tab at the top and you will see it in September blogpost – in case you don’t know, I write a blogpost once a month about one of that month’s stories – so don’t forget to check that out. 

Vitoria who is Portuguese but lives in Dubai – this episode is dedicated to you 

In long ago days in Africa, it was Hen’s custom to wander down to the river bank every day in search of food.  Now, one day, as she was peck, peck, pecking in the long grass, who should stick up his huge head out of the water but… 


He opened his mouth big and wide all the better to snap up Hen and gobble her up.  But Hen was bold and fierce.  She had no fear of Crocodile, and she cried out, “Brother, stop!  Stop at once.  Do not dare to eat me.” 

So surprised was Crocodile that he immediately snapped his huge jaws shut.   Hen’s words had confused him.  “Why did Hen call me brother?” he asked himself.   She is not a member of my family.  I am a Crocodile and she is a Hen.  I should not have let her fool me.”  He looked all around him, but of course Hen was nowhere to be seen now. 

“I will come back here tomorrow to this very same spot” said Crocodile “and I will gobble her up. She won’t trick me again.” 

The next day Crocodile swam down the river to the very same spot where he had found Hen the day before.  He stuck his big head out of the water and he watched and waited.  He watched and waited and watched and waited and watched and waited, until finally, after a very long while, who should come a peck, peck, pecking by but…Hen. 

Crocodile shouted out, “Hen, today I am going to swallow you whole in one gulp!”  He opened his mouth as wide as he could. 

But once again Hen showed no fear.  Instead she shouted in a bold, fierce voice.  “Brother, do not dare to eat me!” 

Once again, SNAP!  Crocodile closed his huge jaw shut.  For some reason, he just could not bring himself to eat Hen. 

As he watched Hen saunter off, Crocodile grumbled to himself.  “Why did I let her trick me again?  I know she cannot possibly be a member of my family.  She lives on the land.  I live in the water.  This is ridiculous.  I am going to hunt her down right now and then I am going to eat her all up once and for all!” 

Crocodile heaved his huge body out of the water and started to waddle waddle waddle through the woods looking for Hen. 

After a while, he met his friend, Lizard, who asked him, “Crocodile, what is bothering you today?” 

“Listen, Lizard,” replied Crocodile.  I have a problem. Every day a fat little hen comes down to the riverbank for food.  She looks sooooo delicious that my mouth starts to water the moment I see her.  But just as I open my mouth to gobble her up, she says to me, “Brother, don’t you dare eat me!”  Why does she keep calling me, Brother?” 

“Oh, that’s easy,” said Lizard.  “Ducks lay eggs.  Turtles lay eggs.  I lay eggs.  You lay eggs. Hen lays eggs.  So you see, in this respect, we are all brothers and sisters.” 

Crocodile shook his head sadly.  “Such a shame…that good-to-eat Hen really is my sister.  And even I could not possibly eat my sister.”   

And off Crocodile waddled back to the river in a terrible temper.  

And so to this very day, even though Hen looks so delicious as she comes a peck, peck, pecking down to the riverbank, Crocodile does NOT eat her. 

Well, wasn’t that a clever hen to think of such a creative way to prevent Crocodile from gobbling her up? 

Don’t forget, if this story painted any pictures in your mind, get busy drawing and send it to us at =press contact button- fill in the form and attach your drawing so we can share with others and give you a shout out on the show. 

Cheerio then, join us next time for Journey with Story.

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