Name: the Orinoco crocodile (Crocodylus intermedius) is a critically endangered crocodile and one of the world’s largest living reptiles.
Appearance: they can be distinguished from other crocodiles by their long, narrow snouts. They are typically a pale tan colour although they can range from yellow to dark brown or gray.
Size: large males have been reported up to 6.8 m in the past although 5.2 m is a more widely accepted maximum size. Females are substantially smaller than males.
Diet: Orinoco crocodiles are apex predators and will prey on a variety of fish, reptiles, birds, and mammals, including caimans.
Did you know: they are highly endangered due to excessive hunting for their skins. During the 1940s to the 1960s, thousands were slaughtered in the Orinoco River and the Llanos wetlands. As a result of this hunting, they came close to extinction. The Orinoco crocodile was given protected status in the 1970s but it’s not clear how many individuals remain in the wild, with estimates ranging from 250 to1,500.
Location: the population of Orinoco crocodiles is small and they can only be found in the Orinoco River basin in Colombia and Venezuela.
Best places to see Orinoco crocodiles
According to reports submitted to WildSide, the best places to see Orinoco crocodiles are as follows:
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Photo credit: ddouk under a Creative Commons license from Pixabay