Caiman lizard Facts

Caiman lizard Facts
Caiman lizard is reptile that belongs to the teiid family. It can be found in the Amazon Basin and jungles of South America (Brazil, Ecuador, Peru, Columbia and Guyana). Unlike other species of lizard which prefer dry areas, caiman lizard inhabits forested swamps, rainforests and flooded woodlands. Despite habitat loss and poaching (because of the skin), caiman lizards are still numerous and widespread in the wild.
Interesting Caiman lizard Facts:
Caiman lizard can reach 2 to 4 feet in length and 3 to 6 pounds of weight.
Caiman lizard has orange-red head and green body. Red-colored head is more prominent in males.
Body of caiman lizard is covered with large, heavy scales which look like the scales of a crocodile, hence the name "caiman" lizard.
Caiman lizard has large, bulky head (which is broader in males), powerful jaws, muscular body, short legs and long, laterally compressed tail which facilitates swimming and can be used as a weapon against predators.
Caiman lizard spends part of its life in the water, and other part in the trees.
Caiman lizard has third eyelid which ensures clear vision under the water (it is used as goggles).
Caiman lizard likes to bask in the sun on the branches above the water during the day. It hides in the bushes and trees during the night.
Caiman lizard has forked tongue which collects various odors from the air and facilitates detection of food.
Caiman lizard is a carnivore. Its diet is based on various hard-shelled invertebrates such as apple snails and clams. Thanks to its strong jaws and well-developed molars, caiman lizard can easily crash the shell and extract meat hidden inside. It spits remains of the shell. Fish, rodents and amphibians are usually consumed in the captivity.
Caiman lizard spends most of the time near the rivers, which are used as hiding place from the predators. When it is directly confronted with predator, caiman lizard becomes aggressive. It bites and hits the opponent with its whip-like tail.
Caiman lizard is solitary creature, but it tolerates other caiman lizards, as well as the company of other species of lizard, turtles and fish when it is kept in the captivity.
Natural enemies of caiman lizard are jaguars, large snakes and crocodiles.
Little is known about reproductive habits of caiman lizard except that female lays eggs in the nest in the river bank and covers them with debris to hide them from predators.
Babies are ready to fend for themselves from the moment of birth. They eat insects before their jaws and teeth become strong enough to crash the shells of snails and mollusks.
Caiman lizard can survive more than 10 years in the wild and 8 to 12 years in the captivity.

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