All caimans live in South and Central America. Caimans like wetlands such as rainforests or the Amazon river basin. Caimans also live in flooded savannahs. Caimans belong to the same group because of a bony ridge that is above their eyes. They lay between 14 and 60 eggs. They are nocturnal which means they are awake during the night. They hunt fish, birds, turtles, reptiles, and mammals. They have about 75 long and sharp teeth. They donít tear their prey up they swallow it whole.
The Spectacled Caiman has a very interesting reason for its name. It has a bony ridge around its eyes. This makes it look as if itís wearing eyeglasses. They can grow to be very large. The largest grew to be 10 feet long. Females build really big nests out of soil and vegetation. Spectacled Caimans are very interesting creatures.
The Jacare' caiman has another name. It is also known as Schneider's Dwarf Caiman. The Jacareí Caiman is very lucky. Since it is so bony it canít be used for making shoes or purses. The Jacareí has a diet that I wouldnít want to eat. They eat snakes, mammals, and large rodents. Their scientific name is the Paleosuchus Trigonatus. Paleosuchus means ancient crocodile. Trigonatus means provided with three corners. So Paleosuchus Trigonatus means in "ancient crocodile provided with three corners." They usually grow to be 1.7- 2.3 meters. They are mostly green but some have a brown tinge to them. When mating the Male grows to be 1.4 m. and the female grows to be 1.3m. When they are that size they are between the ages of 10-20. The eggs are laid n near streams. It takes 100 days for the eggs to hatch.
The Black Caiman
The Black Caiman just gives away its name. Thatís right, you guessed it, the Black Caiman has black skin. Its skin is a brownish blackish color. The low jaw of the Black Caiman has a gray banding around it, but itís a brown color in older caimans. After they are fully grown for a while the band around there low jaw will fade away. The Black Caiman has a flat skull and it has a narrow snout. It also has larger eyes than other caimans. Another different thing about the eyes is that the eye color is red. Other caimans donít have red eyes. The Black Caiman can grow to be very long. It can grow to be 20 feet long. Itís a very big and large caiman. It has a light belly. The Black Caiman is very similar to the American alligator.
The Broad-Snouted Caiman also gives away its name. As you guessed it the Broad-Snouted Caiman has an exceptionally broad snout. On top of the broad snout it has a little ridge. They also have about 72 teeth in their large mouth. They eat a little differently than other caimans. They eat snails, but will eat fish and amphibians, too. In there nest they will lay 20-60 eggs. When the females build their nests the male might help them build it. After the mother lays her eggs it will probably take at least 70 days before the eggs will hatch. The Broad-Snouted Caiman is an endangered species, so they are protected by people who devote their lives to taking care of crocodilians.
Cuvierís Dwarf Caiman
The Cuvierís Dwarf Caiman is the smallest crocodilian. When itís an adult itís less than five feet long. These caimans are considered shy. Dwarf caimans are kept as pets in some places in South America. They have 78-82 teeth. Some of their teeth are curved. They eat rodents, fish, and large insects. They lay 10-25 eggs. Babies are not allowed to swim till the end of the first day they were hatched. They get covered in a layer of slow-drying mucus.