What is the Alligator

  The Alligator, known as a large reptile that grows around five centimeters in length and two hundred and thirty kilograms in weight has an average lifespan up to fifty years on earth. This species belongs to Alligatoridae family from the genus Alligator line.

  This large crocodilian has two main living species in the moment such as the American Alligator and the Chinese Alligator. The Alligator has been around since Paleocene epoch which is about 66 million years. As a matter of fact, their bones have been found in excavated fossil discoveries around the globe.

American alligator

Alligators

  The American alligator has been averaged to weigh around three hundred and sixty kilograms with an average length of 4m. The Chinese alligator, which has been known to be relatively smaller, weighs around forty-five kilograms while only being able to reach a top length of 2.1 meters, which makes a huge contrast between these two types if compared to each other.

  But both of them have obvious geographic differences. The juvenile alligators are usually colored with white and yellow marks that eventually fade and turn into dark olive-brown or black when they reach adulthood.

Alligator

Where they reside

  Similar to other two types, this species can only be found in China and the United States. The Chinese alligators are commonly found around the Yangtze River and other neighboring provinces. The American alligators are situated in the southeast United States. They can usually be found near freshwater locations, such as marshes, ponds, rivers, wetlands, swamps, and lakes. They are known to be large contributors to plant diversity and provision of shelter for other animals during the drought season.

Their Diet

  The Alligator’s diet largely depends on their size. The juvenile alligators usually eat various forms of small creatures including fish, worms, crustaceans, and snails. As they progressively increase their size with growth, their prey tends to grow in size as well.
Included In the diet of adult alligators are large fish, turtles, gar, muskrat, coypu, deer, birds, and even including other reptiles. Alligators stomachs contain gizzard stones which as a food grinder inside the gastrointestinal tract. These species will resolve to eat carrion provided that they are sufficiently very hungry.

  The alligators are considered apex predators within the distribution for they have been spotted in some instances to ambush or surprise attacks on various mammals such as black bears, dogs, and panthers in Florida. Alligators do not identify the human as prey unlike their cousins the crocodiles, but they will not hesitate to attack them if provoked.

Chinese alligator shoes

Man-made uses

  Alligators are raised commercially for the specific use of alligator meat and skin. These are used for bags and shoes and also provide benefits in eco-tourism industry. Alligator meat has also been utilized for the consumption of humans.

  Indeed, all of us know now that Alligators do not only provide a balance in the ecosystem with the control of muskrats and coypu. They also serve as a great food alternative. Plus, they are an excellent material for clothing, footwear, and other accessories.

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