Dwarf crocodile

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Dwarf crocodile
Temporal range: Miocene–Recent[1]
Scientific classification Edit this classification
Domain: Eukaryota
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Crocodilia
Family: Crocodylidae
Subfamily: Crocodylinae
Clade: Osteolaeminae
Genus: Osteolaemus
Cope, 1861
O. tetraspis
Binomial name
Osteolaemus tetraspis
Cope, 1861
  • O. t. tetraspis Cope, 1861
  • O. t. osborni (Schmidt, 1919)
Range of the dwarf crocodile in green

The dwarf crocodile (Osteolaemus tetraspis), is an African crocodile. It is the smallest extant (living) specie of crocodile.[3]

Dwarf crocodiles can reach an average adult length of 1.5 m (4.9 ft). The biggest recorded length for this species is 1.9 m (6.2 ft). Adult ones can weigh between 18 and 32 kg (40 and 71 lsb). The biggest females can be as heavy as 40 kg (88 lb), while the biggest males can weigh up to 80 kg (180 lb).

The dwarf crocodile is a shy and mainly nocturnal. It spends the day hiding in pools or burrows. Although, it occasionally may be active during the day.

Foraging is mainly done in or near the water. Although it is considered to be one of the most terrestrial species of crocodilian, it may expand the feeding pattern to land, usually after rains.

References[change | change source]

  1. "Osteolaemus Cope 1860". Paleobiology Database. Fossilworks. Archived from the original on 17 September 2018. Retrieved 17 September 2018.
  2. Crocodile Specialist Group (1996). "Osteolaemus tetraspis". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 1996: e.T15635A4931429. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.1996.RLTS.T15635A4931429.en.
  3. "Fossilworks: Osteolaemus". fossilworks.org. Archived from the original on 2019-09-16. Retrieved 2020-08-21.