It’s Raining Animal Facts! Crocodiles by Oscar Eng, 806 class of 2016


If you are in a very warm place that is nearby water, then you might notice a floating log. But be careful. This log might be a crocodile! Crocodiles are cold-blooded reptiles. Them and their cousins, the alligators, have DNA that is more similar to that of birds than to other modern reptiles.

Other than having the ability to look like a log, a crocodile also has other adaptations to an aquatic life. Their eyes and nostrils are located at the top of their heads so they can see and breathe while the rest of their body is underwater. Their tails are strong enough to propel their bodies through the water and that makes these reptiles agile swimmers. Their sharp teeth is perfect for hunting. The crocodile has the strongest bite force of any living animal. If you had such a bite force, then you could crush something as hard as a watermelon as easy as you could crush a grape without the force.

If you think of crocodiles, you would picture them of as snappy bad-tempered monsters. But they can be gentle and good-natured. Mother crocodiles are one of the few reptiles that care for their young! A female crocodile lays her eggs and buries them in the ground where they will be safe from predators. She guards the eggs day and night for more than a month. When a predator tries to steal the eggs, she will attack! Once the eggs hatch, her babies will call out to her. She will dig them out and carry them to the water. She does so using her mouth. Even with a mouthful of sharp teeth, she is as gentle as a crocodile could ever be. Even though it is safer for her babies in the water, she still stands guard until they become independent. When baby crocodiles are first hatched, they have the instinct to eat. If they could avoid being preyed upon, they would grow up into top predators.

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