A crocodile is a large semi aquatic reptile, which essentially can be found in a lot of different places. They really like to live in a region where it is humid and moist although they have been known to live near salt water areas as well. Wherever it is warm and humid and a lot of fresh water, you will most likely find a few crocodiles living in that area. Lakes, freshwater and wetlands are perfect for this huge reptile. It has been documented that crocodiles have literally lived on the earth for over two hundred and fifty million years and they are extremely aggressive too.
What are crocodiles
Crocodiles originated from the Crocodylidae family and currently, there are at least 23 different species of crocodiles. Crocodiles can be found in the tropical lands of Asia, Africa, North America, South America and Australia. Crocodiles mostly live in freshwater such as lakes, rivers and wetlands. One interesting fact about crocodiles is that despite being a very ancient species, they have hardly evolved since the dinosaur age. By the way, the word crocodile originated from an ancient Greek word, which literally means lizard.
How long do crocodiles live?
For many experts and scientists, it is very hard to determine just how long a crocodile can live because there are certain criteria about them that is yet unknown. Some crocodile species have lived in captivity for very long periods of time, many years more than those raised in the wild because certain threats to them have been taken away. However, those crocodiles that live in the wild have a chance to live between fifty and sixty years depending on the location and the safety of the crocodile. It is hard to determine how old a crocodile is because they are measured based upon the lamellar growth rings in bones and teeth. This is one way to help determine the age of these reptiles. How long they live in the wild is uncertain really. Another way of tracking a wild crocodile to find out its age is to measure and tag it at birth and keep up with it until death. Even this can cause difficulty too, due to the fact that it is hard to tell if they were killed or died of natural causes.
What’s awesome about crocodiles?
Most reptiles shade their skin for biological reasons. Crocodiles on the other hand, despite being a reptile, doesn’t do so. Crocodiles do not have any sweat glands in their body and release their body heat through their mouth. Crocodiles are thought to have homing instinct as in several occasion they have correctly demonstrated the ability to return to their habitat from a far distant place.
The Australian freshwater crocodile are the fastest crocodile in terms of land speed, at 17 km/h (11 mph).
Is it an alligator or a crocodile?
People often confuse a crocodile with an alligator and that is common because they do look so much alike. And yet, there are numerous ways to tell the difference. Crocodiles have lighter skin than alligators, and they also have thin long, “V” shaped jaws compared to an alligator which has a shorter mouth. And when a crocodile closes his mouth, teeth can be seen this isn’t the case with an alligator. A crocodile can reach up to fifteen feet in length weighing almost two thousand pounds. Crocodiles can run very fast and when they are fighting with prey or being caught for captivity they roll over several times in the water in an attempt to drown their prey. Crocodiles can also keep their eyes open underwater and close their nostrils while their throat is a way for them to eat their meal without having to swallow any water at all.
More to study
The more scientists can watch and examine crocodiles in captivity the more we learn about them. They have been on the planet for 250 million years, that’s a long time and a lot for people to learn.