Alligators and Crocodiles Essay

Submitted By BaileeJ
Words: 694
Pages: 3

Alligators and Crocodiles

All alligators are crocodiles, but not all crocodiles are alligators. Sound confusing? It's really not once you look at the taxonomy. Both alligators and crocodiles are members of the reptilian order Crocodylia. But the families they belong to, Alligatoridae and Crocodylidae respectively, differ. Crocodiles and alligators are top-notch hunters and will eat just about anything they can get their teeth on. Alligators and Crocodiles are among the largest reptiles.
[Don’t let the crocodile’s prehistoric look fool you, they to this day are one of the most advanced reptiles. Unlike most reptiles the crocodile has a four-chambered heart. They have a streamlined body that enables them to maneuver quickly through waters. Crocodiles are very fast over short distances, even out of water. Crocodiles have extremely powerful jaws capable of biting down with 3,000 pounds of pressure per square inch and sharp teeth for tearing flesh. Size greatly varies between species, from the Dwarf Crocodile to the enormous Saltwater Crocodile. Large species can reach over 5 or 6 metres long and weigh well over 2,640 pounds. Despite their large adult size, crocodiles start their life at around 20 centimetres long. An alligator is much like a crocodile in appearance, but has a broader, more rounded snout. Also the fourth tooth from the front of the lower jaw lies inside the closed mouth rather than outside as it does in the crocodile. Alligators have valves in their ears and nostrils to keep water out. Because their mouths lack lips and thus do not shut completely, two flaps cover the gullet and windpipe during dives. Its rear legs are longer than its front legs and each foot has four toes ending in claws. In the United States, alligators grow larger than crocodiles. Adults usually range from 6-12 feet in length, but the maximum is more than 19 feet. A full grown male may weigh up to 1200 pounds, while the female is slightly smaller.]
[Depending on what type of alligator or crocodile, live in a variety of places such as fresh and brackish marshes, ponds, lakes, rivers and swamps, bayous and big spring runs. Crocodiles and alligators need hiding spots to be covered to sneak attack on prey.Crocodiles and alligators are on the top of the food chain in freshwaters, they do not interact well with others. They eat any swimming thing they can get ahold of. Crocodiles and alligators are known for attacking humans. They will attack in water and out of. Crocodiles and alligators are better hunters in the water where they can sneak attack, also they are faster in water then out of. It is hard for them to have quick movement on land because they don’t have…