* Threatened or Endangered
American Alligator *
: Alligator mississippiensis
: Coastal southeastern North Carolina to the Florida Keys and west to southern Texas, north to southeastern Oklahoma and southern Arkansas
: Fish, small mammals, birds, turtles, snakes, frogs and invertebrates
: 6 to 19 feet
: Least Concern
• Once hunted to near extinction, alligators have made a remarkable comeback with the help of protection from the Endangered Species Act and commercial breeding.
• Though many times thought of as “monsters” and overly aggressive, alligators are usually quite calm, especially compared to their aggressive cousin, the crocodile.
• Alligators are one of nature’s best conservation tools, digging deep holes which provide water for the wildlife community.
• The large 4th tooth on the bottom jaw fits into a socket in the upper jaw and is not visible when the jaw is closed. In crocodiles, this tooth is visible when the jaw is closed.