Skip to main content

Dwarf Crocodile

Osteolaemus tetraspis
Meet the smallest living Crocodile, the appropriately named Dwarf Crocodile! These guys top out at lengths of only 5ft, which is pretty minuscule when you compare them to their larger Nile cousins. Those guys can grow to 16ft or more!

Dwarf Crocodiles are found in tropical west and central Africa. They live in ponds, swamps, and marshes, where they are most active during the nighttime hours.

When it comes to their personality and behavior, Dwarf Crocodiles are pretty timid and slow moving, but that doesn't mean they aren't still effective predators! They feed on all sorts of invertebrates and vertebrates alike, and will also consume carrion when available.

Mother Dwarf Crocodiles are very attentive parents. They build mounds out of decaying vegetation, which generate the heat needed to incubate the eggs. She will guard the mound until the eggs hatch, and then watch over her offspring for up to a year, as their small size makes them very vulnerable to predation.

Unfortunately, Dwarf Crocodiles are listed as Vulnerable. They aren't as well studied as their larger cousins, so the exact population status isn't as understood. It appears that hunting and deforestation are contributing to their decline.

IUCN Status : Vulnerable
Location : Africa
Size : Length up to 5ft (1.5m)
Classification : Phylum : Chordata -- Class : Sauropsida -- Order : Crocodilia
Family : Crocodylidae -- Genus : Osteolaemus -- Species : O. tetraspis

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Bornean Orangutan

The Bornean Orangutan is one of two extant Orangutan species in the world. It is the third largest primate (after Gorillas) and is the largest primarily tree-dwelling animal in the world. Males are substantially larger than females, and average at around 165lbs. Bornean Orangutans are largely solitary. A handful might live within a small range but they will seldom interact with one another. Males and females only meet up to breed, which happens only once every several years. A young Orangutan will stay with it's mother for about five years, and the females tend to go about eight years between births. That is the longest interim period of any animal! Sadly, the Bornean Orangutans are in a lot of trouble. They need large forests in order to thrive, and deforestation and habitat degradation has left many homeless. They are also hunted for meat and for traditional medicines. Conservation areas are being established to help these guys in the wild, and it is believed that there are a

Four!

For anyone who was counting, yesterday was our birthday-- four years! Four years filled with animals from A to Z, more than 1,100 of them! I can't thank my readers enough, it's been wonderful! And in celebration of that milestone... I'm taking a break. Hopefully not forever, but for a little bit at least. In the mean time I plan on getting a new layout out, along with some updates to some of the older articles. I'll post updates here and on the Facebook page, I'm also brainstorming some new animal-related projects, so keep an eye out! Thanks again for four awesome years!

10 Years?!

My goodness! It's been 6 years since I went on hiatus, and now more than 10 years since AaD was born, and what a world we've moved in to! Animal a Day is coming back- but in the meantime, check us out on Facebook, for your daily dose of #BIRDNEWS