If you go near the water in some parts of the world, you need to be on alert at all times. Sometimes, just below the surface, wait creatures that are the very stuff of nightmares; giants with enormous jaws, razor sharp teeth and powerful tails. They are strong enough to grab their prey and drag it below the surface of the water, never to be seen again. It is of course the crocodile, an animal that needs little introduction. They are found in many parts of the world, presenting a constant threat to the animals that live nearby.
These ancient animals are perfectly adapted to their environment, and even lived alongside the dinosaurs. Despite having been on earth for so long, some species are currently at risk of disappearing altogether. This is because they have been heavily hunted by man, mostly for their valuable skins. Some species, however, are thriving and look set to be sharing this planet with us for many generations to come.
Crocodiles have both terrified and fascinated us for as long as we can remember. Researchers have set about learning what we can about them and have uncovered some very interesting facts.
Crocodile Fact #10: Largest Reptile
Crocodiles can grow to be very big animals. In fact, they are the largest reptiles on the planet. The largest of all crocodiles are saltwater crocodiles, so called because they are found around coastal saltwater environments, whereas most other species live in freshwater such as rivers and lakes. Saltwater crocodiles are also known for venturing out into the oceans and can swim over very long distances. These monsters can grow to be over 23 feet long and weigh around 2,200 pounds.
Not all species get this large, though. The smallest of all crocodile species is the dwarf crocodile, which doesn’t grow to any more than six feet long. The next largest reptile is the enormous leatherback sea turtle which can reach weights of up to around 1,320 pounds.