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Chinese Alligator

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The Chinese alligator is one of the only two species of alligator known in the world. They are indigenous to eastern China, but generally found in a small area of the Yangtze river close to the Atlantic Coastline. Chinese alligators are similar to their cousins the American alligators, but there are some differences. For instance, Chinese alligators only reach a size of about 5ft. in length for the males and 4 1/2 ft. for the females. Their snout is broader and more robust than that of the American alligator. During the winter months the Chinese alligator burrows down in caves to brumate, which is similar to hibernating. When spring arrives, they are back out sunning themselves, eating and then the mating season soon begins. Unfortunately the Chinese alligator is critically endangered with only 140 or so surviving in the wild. Efforts are being made however, to protect the Chinese alligator. The locals often call the Chinese alligator (Yow-lung) which means “Dragon”. It is said that the mythical Chinese dragon was actually the Chinese alligator.

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