The Difference Between Alligators and Crocodiles

Though alligators and crocodiles are different species, people tend to have a hard time telling them apart. In this article, you can learn about the difference between alligators and crocodiles, as well as about what they have in common. Additionally, I have created a venn diagram on the topic, which may be useful for students who are researching this topic.

baby-alligator-600

Alligators and Crocodiles are both members of an animal group called Crocodilians. There are 24 species of crocodilians: 14 crocodiles, 6 caimans, 2 alligators, and 1 gharial. (The gharial is a crocodilian native to India.)

Below you will find a venn diagram that explain the similarities and differences between alligators and crocodiles.

difference between alligators and crocodiles

Alligators

  • Dark gray or black color
  • When an alligator’s mouth is closed, only the top teeth are visible
  • Wide head and wide “U” shaped snout
  • Has sensor pits only on head
  • Lays about 45 eggs
  • Builds nest above ground
  • Live in North America and eastern China

Crocodiles

  • Tan or greenish gray skin
  • When a crocodile’s mouth is closed, both the top and bottom teeth are visible
  • Have a narrow head and a long snout
  • Has sensor pits all over body
  • Lays about 50 eggs
  • Builds nest under ground
  • Live in North America, Africa, Asia and Australia

Both:

  • Both are reptiles
  • Carnivores
  • Have about 60 teeth
  • Cold-blooded
  • Can stay underwater for up to 2 hours
  • Can swim up to 6 miles an hour
  • Nocturnal
  • Never stop  growing over the course of their lives, but growing slows down as they get older

baby-alligator

Related Printables

Here are a few more alligator-themed printables!

 

alligator dot-to-dot

alligator coloring page

greater than less than alligators

alligator-large-print-dot-to-dot

alligator spot the difference activity

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