American Alligator

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American Alligator

Alligator mississippiensis
Most reptiles pay no attention to their offspring, but alligators are truly tender mothers. The female builds a large mound of rotting vegetation and carefully lays her eggs inside to incubate. When they hatch, she guides them to the water and watches out for them for at least two years.
Fact file:

Length: Up to 15 ft

Habitat: Primarily freshwater swamps and marshes, but also in rivers, lakes and smaller bodies of water.

Prey: Fish, birds, turtles, snakes, mammals, and amphibians.

Current Range: Marshes, swamps, and bayous of southeastern U.S.