The Alligator and the Chinese alligator are very different animals

The Alligator and the Chinese alligator are very different animals

The Chinese alligator is a much larger animal and has a different diet than the American Alligator.

The Chinese alligator is also known as the Yangtze River Alligator because it can be found in China's Yangtze River. The American alligator has been found in North America and primarily in Florida.

The Chinese Alligator is about 10-12 feet long and weighs about 200 pounds. The American Alligator is about 4-6 feet long and weighs about 100 pounds.

What is an Alligator?


An alligator is a large, carnivorous reptile with a narrow snout that can be found in the swamps of the southeastern United States. It has a broad, flat tail and short legs with sharp claws. It also has sharp teeth for tearing and killing its prey.

Alligators are often confused with crocodiles because of their similar appearance and habitats. However, they are not related to each other.

What is a Chinese Alligator?

Chinese alligator

A Chinese alligator is a type of large, freshwater crocodile found in China. It is the only species in the genus Alligator sinensis.

The word "Chinese" does not refer to nationality or ethnicity, but rather to a geographic location.

The Difference Between Alligators and Chinese Alligators

The difference between alligators and Chinese alligators is that the Chinese alligator is smaller and has a more slender body.

Alligators are large, heavy reptiles that live in swamps, rivers, and lakes. They have a long body with short legs, a long neck with no head crest, and small eyes. They have sharp teeth and powerful jaws to chew through tough food. Alligators eat fish, frogs, turtles, birds, and even other alligators!

Chinese alligators are smaller than their American counterparts with a more slender bodies. They also have longer legs than American alligators to help them swim faster in the water. Their eyes are rounder than their American counterparts which gives them greater vision underwater.

The Chinese alligator is the smallest of the three alligators. All three species have a similar body structure but they vary in size, color, and temperament.

Alligators vs. Chinese Alligators - Which One to Control or Avoid?

An alligator is a large crocodilian reptile that can be found in the Americas, Europe, Africa, and Asia. The word "alligator" is derived from the Spanish word "el Lagarto" which means "the lizard".

There are two types of alligators - the American Alligator and the Chinese Alligator. They are both found in North America but they differ in size, color, habitat, and behavior.

The American Alligator is smaller than the Chinese Alligator with a maximum length of 6 meters (20 feet) as compared to 10 meters (33 feet). The American Alligator's skin is usually brownish-gray or olive green while the Chinese Alligator's skin ranges from black to dark brown. The American Alligator has a wide range across North America while the Chinese Alligator is native to southeastern Asia.

Physical Description

chinese alligator

Though it still feels like the American gator, the critically endangered Chinese alligator has many subtle differences. It's smaller, its head is more robust, and its snout is slightly upturned. Eyeris of the Chinese alligator is more rounded in appearance. They also have a bony plate that is missing in the American alligator. The American alligator also lacks these cones, or osteoderms, on its belly.


Chinese alligators typically grow to be about 5 feet (1.5 meters) in length & they're larger than their American counterparts by almost half. They can also weigh up to 500 pounds! Some hawks may weigh as much as 85 pounds (38.5 kilograms), but most weigh less than 50 pounds (23 kilograms).

Native Habitat

The Chinese alligator is the only member of the eight species in the Alligatoridae family to exist outside of America. Historical alligators were found in China where they lived in lakes, marshlands, and along the Yangtze River. Today it is limited to the lower Yangtze, primarily in the Anhui and Zhejiang province in eastern China, where it is the most abundant alligator species in the world. The Chinese alligator was featured on the US $5 bill between 1878 and 1899 before it was replaced with a new design by President Grover Cleveland.

The Chinese alligator is found in slow-moving freshwater rivers and streams, including lakes, ponds, and swamps. Marshlands, ponds, lakes, reservoirs, river backwater canals, rice paddies, and irrigation networks are perfect places for this species.


Young animals vocalize to bring the group together and maintain its cohesion, while adults respond to juvenile distress calls. Males tend to bellow during the mating season.

Food/Eating Habits

The Chinese alligator is an opportunistic feeder. Its diet mostly includes snails, crustaceans, insects, and fish, but young waterfowl and rodents will be taken if available. They have blunt teeth adapted well to crushing shelled animals.

The Chinese are fed small rats, mice, and fish.

Reproduction and Development

chinese alligator

The mating system is polyforms, as both males & females have multiple partners. They respond aggressively toward each other in the first encounter and this is a characteristic of animals in general. Chickens come together in nests before they hatch and many chicks spend a lot of time with their parents during the incubating process.

The mother provides shelter for them and feeds them while they are developing. When hatching begins, she opens the egg chamber to let the chicks out one by one at first, and then she helps in catching them up to the age of 4 weeks.

Female ducks mature between around 4 and 5 years, mating occurs in early summer, and they lay eggs that hatch in September. They lay around 2-3 dozen eggs and all but 2 or 3 of them are viable. Females give parental care & help the newly hatched baby fish escape the nest by carrying them to the water.

Sleep Habits

This species digs extensive earthen tunnels with multiple chambers, entrances, and pools. They mostly stay in their tunnels during the day when humans are nearby which is done to avoid persecution while they also spend time underground during cool weather and when it is raining heavily.

As of April rolls around each year, alligators emerge from their winter burrows and bask during the day. As summer begins, they go into more nocturnal feeding habits to avoid people and heat while mating.


Chinese alligators can live up to 70 years. They reproduce into their 50s, often spawning two to three times a year. The Chinese alligator is found in rivers, lakes, and wetlands, but is not very numerous in terms of body size. The Chinese alligator is a rather small crocodilian with an adult reaching up to 1 meter long and weighing up to 8 kg.

Leave a Comment