The life-size model, named “davy” after explorer David Livingston, was taken between Thursday afternoon and Friday morning last week from its position within the gardens of Edinburgh’s St Andrew Square.
The fibreglass crocodile was returned in the early hours of Saturday morning, but its owners added it was “a wee bit poorly.”
Davy was in the gardens as an advert for an exhibition on David Livingston’s African adventures at the National Library of Scotland.
The sculpture was filled with sand and would have weighed 180kg, which was removed it was taken from St Andrew Square.
The library said they were glad to have their “mock croc” back.
A spokesman said: “Thank you to all who searched, shared, liked and tweeted to help find our missing crocodile.
“The power of the people and the police closing in brought our mock croc home to St Andrew’s Square in Edinburgh in the wee small hours of Saturday morning.
“He is a wee bit poorly after his 24 hour ordeal but is already back to business promoting our free David Livingstone exhibition, which will be on at George IV Bridge every day until Sunday 3 November.”