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Alligator mississippiensis

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An alligator species of the subfamily Alligatorinae endemic to the southeastern United States


Alligator mississipiensis is one of the two presently living species of the subfamily Alligatorinae (true alligators). The other is A. sinensis. A. mississipiensis is an alligator species that is endemic to the southeastern United States. Similar to other alligators, the species have a shorter and broader snout than the crocodile, thus, shaped like a letter U, and the large teeth of the lower jaw shut into pits in the upper jaw, which has no marginal notches.

This species is larger than A. sinensis. The adult male can reach up to 15 ft in length. It can weigh up to 1,000 lbs. The adult females are smaller in size, i.e. up to 9.8 ft. They are commonly found living in freshwater wetlands, e.g. marshes and cypress swamps.

A. mississippiensis used to be in the list of endangered species according to the Endangered Species Act of 1973. However, conservation efforts led to their increase in number and are now listed as least concern by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.

Scientific classification:

  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Chordata
  • Class: Reptilia
  • Superorder: Crocodylomorpha
  • Order: Crocodilia
  • Family: Alligatoridae
  • Genus: Alligator
  • Species: A. mississippiensis

Common name(s):

  • American alligator
  • common alligator

See also: