Anonymous
Anonymous asked in PetsReptiles · 1 decade ago

what is the difference between a crocodille and an alligator?

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  • 1 decade ago
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    The first difference between a crocodile and an alligator is that they are from different families of crocodilians. Crocodiles are from the crocodylidae family, while alligators and caiman are from the alligatoridae family.

    In terms of physical differences the easiest way to tell the difference between the two is that a crocodile has a very long, narrow, V-shaped snout, while the alligator's snout is wider and U-shaped. Because of the wide snout of the alligator it packs more crushing power to eat prey like turtles that constitute part of its diet. The narrow crocodile snout, although still very powerful, is not really suited for prey like turtles but is very versatile for fish and mammals.

    Another physical difference between the crocodile and the alligator is that the crocodile's upper and lower jaws are nearly the same width, so the teeth are exposed all along the jaw line in an interlocking pattern, even when the mouth is closed. They also have an enormous 4th tooth on the lower jaw that is accommodated by depressions in the upper jaw just behind the nostrils.

    An alligator, on the other hand, has a wider upper jaw, so when its mouth is closed the teeth in the lower jaw fit into sockets of the upper jaw, hidden from view. Only the teeth of the upper jaw are exposed along the lower jaw line. Even the enormous 4th tooth on the bottom jaw, which is exposed in a crocodile, is hidden in the alligator.

    Another physical difference is that crocodiles have a lighter olive brown coloration, while alligators appear blackish. Alligators also prefer freshwater while crocodiles like brackish water and sometimes even ocean.

    Speaking to this difference, while crocodiles and alligators both have glands on their tongues, crocodiles still use these glands to excrete excess salt. Alligators seem to have lost this ability, making their tolerance for salt water comparatively brief. Biologists believe this suggests that the crocodile is less removed from its oceanic ancestry.

    Both crocodiles and alligators have dotted sensory pits along the upper and lower jaws that look almost like beard stubble. They detect slight changes in water pressure, thought to help the animals locate prey. These sensory pits were called Integumentary Sense Organs (ISOs) until they were renamed to Dermal Pressure Receptors (DPRs). While both animals have them along the jaws, the crocodile has one on every scale covering its entire body. Some researchers believe the crocodile's DPRs might be linked to detecting levels of salinity.

    It is generally stated that alligators are docile compared to aggressive saltwater crocodiles, and that crocodiles grow larger. While true in general, there are exceptions to every rule among the many species. As an example, the average alligator grows to about 14 feet (4.3 meters), while crocodiles can reach 19 feet (5.8 meters) or more. That said there is one species of crocodile - the African dwarf - that barely reaches 5 feet (1.5 meters). Also, the Indian mugger crocodile has a decidedly U-shaped snout, breaking the V-shaped rule

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  • 1 decade ago

    The first difference between a crocodile and an alligator is that they are from different families of crocodilians. Crocodiles are from the crocodylidae family, while alligators and caiman are from the alligatoridae family.

    In terms of physical differences the easiest way to tell the difference between the two is that a crocodile has a very long, narrow, V-shaped snout, while the alligator's snout is wider and U-shaped. Because of the wide snout of the alligator it packs more crushing power to eat prey like turtles that constitute part of its diet. The narrow crocodile snout, although still very powerful, is not really suited for prey like turtles but is very versatile for fish and mammals.

    Another physical difference between the crocodile and the alligator is that the crocodile's upper and lower jaws are nearly the same width, so the teeth are exposed all along the jaw line in an interlocking pattern, even when the mouth is closed. They also have an enormous 4th tooth on the lower jaw that is accommodated by depressions in the upper jaw just behind the nostrils.

    An alligator, on the other hand, has a wider upper jaw, so when its mouth is closed the teeth in the lower jaw fit into sockets of the upper jaw, hidden from view. Only the teeth of the upper jaw are exposed along the lower jaw line. Even the enormous 4th tooth on the bottom jaw, which is exposed in a crocodile, is hidden in the alligator.

    Another physical difference is that crocodiles have a lighter olive brown coloration, while alligators appear

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  • jgmafb
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago

    Well,I actually raise Alligators and I'll tell you these people only know what they are reading and most of it is WRONG.

    First off THEY ARE ALL IN THE FAMILY OF CROCIDILLIAN.

    Second there are Croc's in North America as well not just the places mentioned.

    croc's are meaner but,not always.the coloring is different and the teeth but,a croc will actually chase you down to kill you,where a alligator will run from you.(Don't get me wrong a all.will attack but,only if it is use to being fed by people and the temp is high and causing them to move)Alligators can be tamed and I have them .Contact me if you need any certain straight up answers .Don't listen to these people on here they don't know.I have been raising them for over 35 years.

    Source(s): tired of people talking through their teeth.by the way I have a alligator that you would swear was adog it acts just like one.I do not sell them but,curious are you considering one as a pet?
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  • 1 decade ago

    They are two different species. I don't know the genetic difference, but I know that to tell the difference, you can look at the nose.

    A crocodile will have a more broad and rounded nose and an Alligator will have a pointier nose.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Crocodiles teeth fit it their mouths, alligators teeth don't

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    there basically the same. Except crocodilles are big and scary. =0

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  • 1 decade ago

    shape of the head and jaws the croc is more pointed and the gator is more rounded hope this helps

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  • 1 decade ago

    watch animal planet that did a very good special on this just the other day.....i cant remember which but we are the prey to one of them, but not the other

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Their mandibles work in opposite directions

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  • Cyndie
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    Check out this website: http://128.227.186.212/herpetology/brittoncrocs/cb...

    I was going to copy and paste it, but it was too much info!

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