Do you know that there are actually two alligator species? On this Wildlife Wednesday, we learn about the American alligators smaller oriental cousin.
Even though they’re much smaller than their American counterparts, you still wouldn’t want to get in the way of one! On this Wildlife Wednesday, we learn about Chinese alligators and why a mouth full of teeth isn’t enough to keep them off of endangered species lists.
Traditionally, these smug looking reptiles were found in and around swamps, rivers, lakes, streams, and other wetlands. These days, they’re mostly found in ditches and irrigation ponds.
Why are they threatened?
Chinese alligators may look ferocious, but they just don’t seem to look ferocious enough. The truth of the matter is that this little alligator species is one of the most endangered in the crocodilian family; with fewer than 130 of these reptiles left in the wild, they’re listed as “critically endangered” by the IUCN.
Their dwindling numbers are primarily caused by habitat loss, as most of their historical range has been converted into rice paddies.