AMER­I­CAN CROC­O­DILE

Scuba Diver Australasia + Ocean Planet - - Inspirational Images Of 25 Ocean Species Under Thr -

Text by Ter­ence Koh Pho­tos by

Aaron Wong

ASIA DIVE EXPO

(ADEX 2010. 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 SPEAKER),

Jim Chen

ASIA DIVE EXPO

(ADEX 2017. 2018, 2019 SPEAKER)

& Mas­simo Gior­getta

ADEX CHINA VOO 2018 (Team win­ner–wide-an­gle)

Although other crocodiles also have tol­er­ance to salt­wa­ter due to the salt glands un­der­neath their tongue, the Amer­i­can croc­o­dile, which is found largely in coastal ar­eas, is the only species other than the salt­wa­ter croc­o­dile (Crocody­lus poro­sus) to com­monly live and thrive in salt­wa­ter. Although ex­act data on them is poor or non-ex­is­tent, con­ser­va­tion­ists agree that the Amer­i­can croc­o­dile has been dec­i­mated to crit­i­cal lev­els by il­le­gal hunters for their hide, with the de­struc­tion of their habi­tats also a crit­i­cal fac­tor. While most coun­tries in the Amer­i­can croc­o­dile’s range have en­acted laws to pro­tect them, the ac­tual en­force­ment of those laws is usu­ally in­ad­e­quate. Feed­ing on small fish, in­ver­te­brates, rep­tiles, birds and mam­mals, they are among the largest of the world’s crocodiles, with Cen­tral and South Amer­i­can males grow­ing up to 6.1 me­tres in length.

The North Amer­i­can ones are usu­ally be­tween 2.9 and 4 me­tres long.

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