Chinese alligator

Chinese Alligator

Alligator sinensis

CLASS Reptilia | ORDER Crocodylia | FAMILY Alligatoridae

RANGE Yangtze River basin in eastern China

HABITAT Marshlands, ponds, and lakes

DIET Fish, insects, snails, small mammals, and crustaceans

Up to 88 lbs

Up to 6.5 ft

10 to 50 eggs

IUCN Status
Critically Endangered
Chinese alligator

The Chinese alligator is one of only two species of alligator in the world. It differs from its cousin, the American alligator, because its snout is slightly upturned and tapered and its eyelids have a bony plate.

The Chinese alligator spends its time in caves and burrows during the colder and drier months. It is possible that the mythical Chinese dragon was inspired by the Chinese alligator.

This species is critically endangered due to habitat loss. Scientists estimate that fewer than 130 survive in the wild.