Amazing Alligator Facts
Alligators are reptiles that belong to the Alligatoridae family and are a close relative of crocodiles. They are famous for their bone crushing bites; here are some interesting facts about alligators for you.
- Alligators are native to America and China; they are called American alligator and Chinese alligator.
- A group of alligators is referred as “congregation.”
3. American alligators would have become extinct a long time back if the United States Fish and Wildlife Service didn’t take appropriate steps. They were in the endangered list in the year 1967. The Chinese alligators are in the brink of extinction and are currently found only in the Yangtze River valley.
4. The largest ever alligator recorded measured 19 feet and 2 inches; it was found in Louisiana.
5. The average weight of a male alligator is anywhere between 500 and 600 pounds; the female alligators in general are smaller than male alligators.
6. Alligators on an average have 75 to 80 teeth; an interesting fact about alligator’s teeth is that new ones start to form as and when the old ones fall.
7. American alligators have webbed feet and they are great swimmers. They use their tails to propel in water when swimming.
8. Alligators have two sets of eyelids; outer eyelids and inner eyelids. Outer eyelids close from top to bottom and are made of skin. Inner eyelids close back to front; these inner eyelids act as a protective cover for the eyes.
9. Alligators are capable of running at a speed of 17 to 20 kilometers per hour; this is applicable only if the distance is short. They can’t run long distances.
10. It is the largest of the species that decides the primary territory regardless of the gender.
11. Young alligators eat small fishes, insects, snails and worms. Adult alligators eat larger fishes, turtles, mammals, deer, etc.
12. Alligators have gizzard stones in their stomach that allows them to eat even carrion if there is food shortage. Gizzard stones are also called as gastrolith, which is actually a rock inside the gastrointestinal tract.
13. Alligators reach maturity when they are between 10 and 12 years. They mate between April and May.
14. Male alligators roar to attract its female counterpart and mating in general happens during night in shallow waters. Female alligators prepare a nest of vegetation; the heat formed during decomposition incubates the eggs.
15. Sex of an alligator is determined by the incubation temperature. To get a male offspring, the incubation temperature should be 34 deg. C or higher and for a female offspring, it is 30 deg. C or lesser.
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