9 Cool Facts about Alligators | Pet Reptiles

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Watch more How to Take Care of Reptiles & Amphibians videos: http://www.howcast.com/videos/512402-5-Care-Tips-for-Alligators-Pet-Reptiles

Learn nine cool facts about alligators from reptile and amphibian expert Jungle Bob in this Howcast video.

Okay. Alligators, certainly, are one of my favorite reptiles for a number of reasons. First of all, let’s distinguish alligators from crocodiles. They’re all in the crocodilian family; alligators are a subset of that, as are Gharials, Caimans and true crocodiles, like the Nile crocodile. So, that’s one differentiator.

Alligators have a rounded snout on them, where crocs are more pointed. And, really, alligators, I always say, have kind of a smile to their face. Their teeth don’t normally protrude like this one does. He’s a young alligator. Alligators rotate their teeth like sharks. So, we get two in our lifetime. Alligators, they just keep coming. So, they’re constantly falling out at this age and a new tooth is coming behind. Usually, crocodiles’ teeth are sticking out up and down and they got kind of a menacing scowl to them. Where gators kind of smile before they eat you, right?

Alligators are an American treasure. There’s only two species of alligators on the planet. Our American alligator, that you’re familiar with in Florida, gator country. And then there’s a smaller species in China, the Chinese alligator, which unfortunately for it, is on the verge of extinction due to predation and habitat loss. People in that area of the world eat alligators. So, there’s very, very few of those left.

The rest of the world has crocodiles, Caimans and Gharials. But they’re one of my favorite creatures because they’re nature’s perfect predator. These animals were here 225 million years ago. That’s a big number. Dinosaurs disappeared 65 million years ago and the first one was seen about 175 million years ago. So, what is it about the alligator and the crocodile that kept it alive for so long? And, really, if you look at fossil records, they’re pretty much the same. They just got a lot bigger back then.

Well, what makes them perfect predators, is everything about their body shape and everything about their face. They are solid muscle. Alligators got a huge tail that’s full of muscle that allows them to move very quickly and stealthily through the water, which is how they attack their prey. They sneak up on it, right?

But if you look at the top of his head. His eyes protrude and his nostrils are at the top. So, oftentimes, when he sneaks up on something at the water’s edge, you will just see the top of his head. You’ll see his eyes and his nose. And mammals, unfortunately, for 225 million years, haven’t figured out what’s in the water and what’s about to jump out and get them. They’re often easy prey for an alligator who is the ultimate in stealth.

They have quick reflexes, they push off with their arms and legs and their tail. They bolt out of the water with mouth agape. You can see the teeth sticking out. But what you can’t feel, really, is the jaw strength. This animal has 2,000 pounds per square-inch of jaw strength. It can crush bone. A large alligator, once it latches on to its prey, it has no chance of escaping. Small items, they eat quickly. Larger ones, they pull under the water and drown and they eat it over the course of the next few days, weeks or months, depending on what it is.

In order for them to see properly in the water, alligators have developed a double eyelid system. They have an eyelid that closes their eyes very efficiently to keep dirt out of it and when they sleep. But they also have a clear eyelid that’s underneath that one that goes from the back to the front that allows them to go under the water and see clearly. Much like you wear goggles in a chlorinated pool.

So, they’ll have that eyelid closed. Their nostrils are like the hatches on a submarine. They close those down. They can go a good 45 minutes under the water and then, there’s the business end, right? They sneak up on their prey, they come out of the water with their mouths wide open, look at the sharp teeth, there. Bam. They come down on top of the prey, drag it back into the water and they continue life again, just like they’ve been doing for 225 million years.

The alligator is an American treasure that almost was hunted to extinction 40 years ago because of this little piece of skin, right here. It’s really soft. And that made a wonderful pocketbook, belt, cowboy boot, you name it. And we almost hunted every single one after all those millions of years of being successful.

Luckily, people stepped in and stopped it, but in recent years, it started up again with people in that area of the Southeast saying they need to alligators for commerce. There are even television shows that ar


Snorlax109 says:

Yeah I REALLY hate when they make tv shows about killing alligators and
other animals for “Accessories” like wallets and purses, and usually theres
“swamp” in the name of the show 

Str8UpBusiness says:

Two types of eyelids, them thangs crazy…

TheMuppyOtter says:

Fact #1: Don’t buy a pet alligator. Period.

Jef Bob says:

There also hinted for tail cause it taste good 

Daniel King says:

he’s so fucking cute 

BuffaloGaming says:

I want me one!!!!

G Solomon says:

Facts on alligators
1. Bites people and everything else
2.they are in a lot of horror movies
3.they kill less people then hippos
4.jumps real high

Zomn says:

The Alligator is as muri’kan as the buffalo? Well sheeeet, artists need to
start working that angle into the muri’kan folklore and into muri’kan
iconic art.

Nothing stops an Muri’kan more than patriotism.

selina guerrero says:

Can you have alligators as pets?

Ry Guy says:

My father used to own an Alligator back then they were easily purchased
from a pet store. Now a days they are illegal everywhere.

Andrew Hager says:

Doesn’t really say all that much about how to keep a PET alligator, though.
Perish the thought, of course. I mean, I don’t know the first thing about
looking after reptiles or amphibians.

Epichrisguy says:

So cool

MrMrCameron says:

how do you know for sure? did you find the alligators blood slides inside
his air conditioner?

MriBackup says:


ichimurakun says:

I think it’s better to have the killing of alligators in film and have
people aware of it, than to keep it in the dark

Epichrisguy says:

Soo cooo

UninhibitedIntrepid says:

see you later.

Angel K.N says:


James Doakes says:

Too bad they grow up to be killers right?

Hopesasha says:

I find it funny how he stresses how aggresive herbvirous green iguanas are,
but he acts like carnivorous alligators are puppies.

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