Caiman has excellent sense of hearing and eyesight. Caimans mate at the end of dry season when food is abundant (large number of fish end up trapped in shallow pools of water). This article was most recently revised and updated by, https://www.britannica.com/animal/caiman-reptile-group. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). Caiman's body is covered with hard scales that act like an armor. Due to the large size and ferocious nature of the caimans, they have few natural predators within their environments. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. The spectacled caiman, a native of the tropics from southern Mexico to Brazil, takes its name from a bony ridge between the eyes that resembles the nosepiece of a pair of eyeglasses. Caimans eat just about anything they can get their large, strong jaws around, including birds, fish, amphibians, insects and small mammals.
During summer or droughts, the caiman may dig a burrow and go into a form of summer hibernation called aestivation.
Caimans are both bigger and smaller than alligators. Caimans are well adapted to the life in water. Caimans are usually dull browns, grays, or greens. Female builds a mound in the ground (usually 5 feet wide) and lays up to 65 eggs. There are two types of animal in the alligator family: caimans The largest of these species is the black caiman, a potentially dangerous animal attaining a maximum length of about 4.5 metres (15 feet). Caiman, also spelled cayman, any of several species of Central and South American reptiles that are related to alligators and are usually placed with them in the family Alligatoridae. The other species normally attain lengths of about 2 to 2.5 meters (about 6.6 to 8.2 feet). Caiman lizard has orange-red head and green body. Caiman has narrow snout (that is wide at the base) and bony ridges above its large eyes. It can be olive green, grey, brown or black in color. Caimans are found in freshwater habitats as well as some salt water habitats. Caimans, like all other members of the order Crocodylia (or Crocodilia), are amphibious carnivores. She guards the nest during the period of 6 weeks and waits for eggs to hatch. Caimans are strong swimmers and can move on land with some rapidity. Alligators, caimans and crocodiles are hunted for their skin, which is used for shoes, handbags, belts and wallets. It is abundant along quiet mud-bottomed waters. The other species normally attain lengths of about 1.2–2.1 metres, with a maximum of about 2.7 metres in the spectacled caiman. Interesting Caiman Facts: Caimans can reach 5 to 20 feet in length and weigh from 220 to 1100 pounds, depending on the species. Interesting facts about molten chocolate cake, Interesting facts about the Atacama Desert, Interesting facts about Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, Interesting facts about Norwegian Forest cats. Caimans are nocturnal animals (active during the night). Caiman, also spelled cayman, any of several species of Central and South American reptiles that are related to alligators and are usually placed with them in the family Alligatoridae. There are six species of caiman that can be found in Central and South America: in Puerto Rico, Cuba, Brazil, Ecuador, Peru, Columbia, French Guyana…Caimans live in swamps, flooded savannas, mangroves, slowly moving rivers and lakes. Easy meals ensure energy required for development of eggs. Just like other reptiles, caimans spend most of the day basking in the sun. They hiss when disturbed, and young individuals can inflate themselves before opening their jaws aggressively. Caimans can reach 5 to 20 feet in length and weigh from 220 to 1100 pounds, depending on the species. Jaguars and anacondas are the only other predators of the caimans but they prey only on the smaller specimens. Updates? Temperature of the nest determines the gender of the baby.
They can survive 30 to 40 years in the wild and up to 60 years in captivity.
These reptiles spend much of their time basking on mudflats or in sunlit, muddy jungle streams. Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. A caiman nest is a mound of vegetation and mud consolidated by the female by lying on it. They are found in both deep and shallow water, as they only need enough depth to submerge their bodies. Young caimans eat insects. People hunt caimans because of their beautiful skin and meat. Males and female look alike. Skin is sometimes covered with pale stripes and spots which provide camouflage. Lower temperature is associated with development of females, while higher temperature ensures development of males. Rivers and wetlands, usually slow moving water, are preferred. Interesting Caiman lizard Facts: Caiman lizard can reach 2 to 4 feet in length and 3 to 6 pounds of weight. In the family Alligatoridae, most caimans are confined to the tropical areas of Central and South America, though the ranges of the broad-snouted caiman (, …to this condition occurs in caimans of the genera. Caimans are one of the longest surviving species on the planet having evolved very little over the past 200 million years. Besides humans, jaguars are greatest enemies of caimans. It can be olive green, grey, brown or black in color. Young caimans will follow their mother (after hatching) to the nearest water where she will teach them how to swim. The smallest species is the Cuvier’s dwarf caiman, which grows to 1.2 to 1.5 meters (3.9 to 4.9 feet) long.
Caiman is carnivore (meat-eater). Caimans, like all other members of the order Crocodylia (or Crocodilia), are amphibious carnivores. They are native to northern South America, Central America, and certain parts of the Caribbean. Their coloration helps them to camouflage while hunting. They live along the edges of rivers and other bodies of water, and they reproduce by means of hard-shelled eggs laid in nests built … Caimans are solitary creatures that gather only during the mating season. Caiman Facts For Kids Caimans are members of the alligator family. They have large eyes to help them hunt at night. Caimans have long lifespan. The spectacled caiman, a native of the tropics from southern Mexico to Brazil, takes its name from a bony ridge between the eyes that resembles the nosepiece of a pair of eyeglasses. They look like miniature versions of their parents but have relatively shorter snouts and larger eyes. Caimans are reptiles that are related to alligators and are usually placed with them in the family Alligatoridae. The largest of caiman species is the black caiman, a potentially dangerous animal attaining a maximum length of about 4.5 meters (almost 15 feet) long. The smooth-fronted caimans, smallest of the caimans, are usually inhabitants of fast-flowing rocky streams and rivers in the Amazon region. Caimans are important in their native habitats because they keep number of animals (their prey) under control.
Caiman has strong molar teeth which are designed for crushing of the food. Caimans, are members of the order Crocodylia (a group of reptiles that includes crocodiles, alligators, caimans and gharials). Corrections? Caimans are found in freshwater habitats as well as some salt water habitats. Caimans do not usually attack humans but domestic livestock are at risk. Males and female look alike. Long and flattened tail is used both for swimming and for protection against predators. Caimans are solitary creatures that gather only during the mating season. Caimans have a bony ridge that extends from the eyes, down the snout. They are strong swimmers and feed on fishes, birds, insects, and other animals. Omissions? the longest known lifespan in the wild was estimated at about 60 years old. The average lifespan of caimans from 30 to 40 years. They can swim at speed of 30 miles per hour. Overall, caimans are smaller than their alligator … In the dry season, large numbers may accumulate in pools as the surrounding land dries up. Some people keep caimans as pets. There are six species of caiman.
Almost all caiman species are endangered due to habitat loss and poaching. Caimans, are members of the order Crocodylia (a group of reptiles that includes crocodiles, alligators, caimans and gharials). Humans are the main predators of the caimans as they have been hunted for their meat and skin. Caiman's body is covered with hard scales that act like an armor. Their common name refers to the lack of the bony ridge present in the spectacled caiman. They are native to northern South America, Central America, and certain parts of the Caribbean. Red-colored head is … Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article. They are nocturnal hunters and usually rely on ambushing their prey. As juveniles, spectacled caimans eat aquatic insects, small fish, crustaceans and mollusks. In the brain of reptiles such as the caiman (related to the alligator and crocodile), the olfactory bulb (regulating the sense of smell) remains a large and important structure.
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