The crocodile is a large reptile that can be found in Africa, Asia, Australia, North America, South America and Central America. There are 14 species of crocodile. While the crocodile is similar in appearance to the alligator, the two are not related. The crocodile is known for its strong predatory skills, agressive behavior, strong jaws and very long life span.
1. Scientific & Common Names
4. Present Status
Scientific & Common Names
Kingdom - Animalia
Phylum - Chordata
Class - Reptilia
Order - Crocodilia
Family - Crocodylidae
Subfamily - Crocodylinae
Genera - Crocodylus (12 species), Mecistops (Slender-snouted Crocodile), Osteolaemus (Dwarf Crocodile)
Common Name - Crocodile
The crocodile is a very large reptile. It has a v-shaped head, and all of its teeth are visible when its jaws are closed. The crocodile typically inhabits fresh water, but it can also rarely be found in bodies of saltwater. It subsists on fish, reptiles, birds, mammals and crustaceans and is a very fierce hunter, known for its highly agressive temperament. While the crocodile is sometimes confused with the alligator, the two are not related. There are several methods to distinguish the two, but the easiest is to compare the jaws; the alligator's teeth are not visible when its mouth is closed. The crocodile has 80 teeth and is able to replace these teeth around 50 times over his lifespan.
The female crocodile lays 7 to 95 eggs at a time. The incubation period lasts from 65 to 95 days.
The crocodile is a very aggressive hunter and will attack other animals that enter its chosen territory. It is a carnivore and lives on fish, reptiles, birds, mammals and crustaceans, and it has a lifespan of 70 to 100 years in the wild, with 70 being the average age for this reptile.
The crocodile has been in existence for at least 55 million years. The first written records and studies on this reptile were done in 1768.
There are 14 species of crocodile; most of these are critically endangered and are at high risk for extinction. Many efforts are being made to preserve all 14 species of crocodile, and strict laws have been put in place governing the capture, import and export of the crocodile.