Yacaré caiman (Caiman yacare)

Yacare( ya-car-ae) caiman are found in Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia and Paraguay living in rivers, lakes and wetlands. The name ‘yacare’ comes from the regional term ‘jacaré’ which means alligator.
From being a sub – species of the spectacled caiman until recently they are recognised as a species of their own based on taxonomic work. They grow upto 2.5 – 3M. The Yacare caiman feed by lining up facing the river current and catching fish trying to get past the caiman. They feed on aquatic vertebrates and invertebrates as well as an occasional snake. The females build mound nests and lay around 25- 30 eggs between August –October. Around 30 years ago they were being hunted mercilessly for the supply of crocodile leather. This was because they had no osteoderms (bony deposits) on their belly. This made them good for leather. They are now classified as least concern on the IUCN red list.

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