Alligators and Crocodiles

Length: 2 Pages 577 Words

Leigh Williams Alligators and Crocodiles Crocodiles and alligators are two reptiles that are often mistaken for each other. One of the most common questions alligator and crocodile researchers face today is what the differences are between the two. Although these reptiles favor in physical features, there are numerous differences. The first three differences between the alligator and crocodile are not in physical appearance. These differences are in their subfamilies, number of species, and the origination of their names. Although the alligator and crocodile are both reptiles, the alligator belongs to the alligatorinae subfamily and the crocodile to the crocodylinae subfamily. The alligator and crocodile also differ in their number of species. The alligator has only two different species while the crocodile has twenty- three. The originati Continue...

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8221; The alligator and crocodile are different in size and snout shape. The average crocodile tends to grow eighteen to nineteen feet in length and the alligator grows to an average of fourteen to fifteen feet in length. The crocodile has a longer, more pointed 8220;V8221; shaped snout. The alligator8217;s upper jaw is wider than the lower jaw and overlaps it. The fourth tooth of the alligator stays inside the mouth. They are both scaly reptiles but are two completely different animals. Functioning salt glands on the tongue are only found on crocodiles. on8217;s of their names also come from different phrases and words. The crocodile on the other hand can be found in Africa, Southeast Asia, New Guinea, Australia, and a small part of America. The name alligator comes from the Spanish phrase 8220;el lagar to8221; and the name crocodile comes from the Greek word 8220;Krokodeilos. This feature is not present on the alligator. Alligators are only found in America, except for a small part of China known as the Yangtze River Valley. The skin of the crocodile also has a small spot or dimple close to the edge. Another difference in the alligator and crocodile are their geographic locations.


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One study indicated that, in the 1860s, about three million alligators and crocodiles living in Florida alone (Curry-Lindahl 200). (1550 6 )

Protecting the American Crocodile
One study indicated that, in the 1860s, about three million alligators and crocodiles living in Florida alone (Curry-Lindahl 200). (1564 6 )

The Florida Everglades National Park
water diverted to croplands and city water systems leaves alligators trying to larger flocks of wading birds, a baby boom for crocodiles, healthier seagrass (2992 12 )