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Caiman crocodilus (LINNAEUS, 1758)

IUCN Red List - Caiman crocodilus - Least Concern, LR

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Higher TaxaAlligatoridae, Crocodylia, crocodiles (alligators)
SubspeciesCaiman crocodilus apaporiensis MEDEM 1955
Caiman crocodilus chiapasius (BOCOURT 1876)
Caiman crocodilus crocodilus (LINNAEUS 1758)
Caiman crocodilus fuscus (COPE 1868) 
Common NamesE: Common caiman, Spectacled caiman
G: Brillenkaiman
E: Rio Apaporis Caiman (C. c. apaporiensis)
Venezuela: baba
Colombia: babilla
Nicaragua: guajipal
Brazil: jacare tinga
Peru: jacare, lagarto blanco
Mexico: cocodrilo, ocoroche, cascarudo, cachirre, tulisio, polulo
S: Caimán
Portuguese: Jacaré-do-Pantanal, Jacaretinga, Jacaré-Tinga, Tinga 
SynonymLacerta crocodilus LINNAEUS 1758: 200
Caiman sclerops SCHNEIDER 1801 (fide MEDEM 1981)
Crocodilus sclerops SCHNEIDER 1801 (fide WERMUTH & MERTENS 1977)
Crocodilus sclerops — WIED 1824
Alligator sclerops — DUMÉRIL & BIBRON 1836: 79
Alligator sclerops — BRÜHL 1874
Alligator sclerops — BRÜHL 1881
Caiman sclerops — DITMARS 1927: 80
Caiman crocodilus — CONANT & COLLINS 1991: 40
Caiman crocodilus — SCHWARTZ & HENDERSON 1991: 666
Caiman crocodilus — GORZULA & SEÑARIS 1999
Caiman crocodylus — LEHR 2002: 69

Caiman crocodilus apaporiensis MEDEM 1955
Caiman sclerops apaporiensis MEDEM 1955
Caiman crocodilus apaporiensis — NICKEL & AULIYA 2004
Caiman crocodilus apaporiensis — ESCOBEDO-GALVÁN et al. 2015
Caiman crocodilus apaporiensis — BALAGUERA-REINA 2019

Caiman crocodilus chiapasius (BOCOURT 1876)
Alligator (Jacare) chiapasius BOCOURT 1876
Caiman crocodilus chiapasius — ESCOBEDO-GALVÁN et al. 2011

Caiman crocodilus fuscus (COPE 1868)
Perosuchus fuscus COPE 1868
Perosuchus fuscus — GRAY 1869: 171
Caiman crocodilus fuscus — MERTENS 1952: 37
Caiman crocodilus fuscus — NICKEL & AULIYA 2004
Caiman crocodilus fuscus — GRANT & LEWiS 2010 
DistributionBrazil (incl. Mato Grosso, Acre, Pará, Piauí), Colombia (incl. Valle del Cauca), Costa Rica,
Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras,
Mexico (Chiapas), Nicaragua, Panama, Peru (Pasco etc.),
Suriname, French Guiana, Guyana,
Tobago, Trinidad,
Venezuela, Bolivia

Cuba (introduced), Isla de Juventud (=Isla dePinos; introduced),
Puerto Rico (introduced), Lesser Antilles (introduced ?),
USA (introduced to Florida, Texas)

Type locality: restricted to Guyana by MERTENS & WERMUTH 1955.

apaporiensis: NW South America (upper Rio Apaporis, between the falls of Jirijirimo and Puerto Yaviya, Colombia); Type locality: upper Rio Apaporis, Commisario Amazonas, Colombia.

chiapasius: Mexico (coastal Chiapas), coastal Guatemala, El Salvador;

fuscus: S Mexico (Oaxaca), south to NW Colombia (incl. San Andrés); Type locality: “Mittel-Amerika”, New Granada (Colombia), Rio Magdelena (fide Malnate 1971)  
Reproductionoviparous. Exhibits temperature‐dependent sex determination (TSD) fide Cornejo-Páramo et al. 2020 (and references therein). 
TypesLectotype: UUZM (= ZMUU) (2); the 60cm s-v length discolored and desiccated syntype in the ZMUU, referred to as the "type specimen" by Lönnberg 1896, and as the "holotipo" by Medem 1981, designated by Hoogmoed and Gruber 1983: 379 (fide King & Burke 1989). Paralectotypes: NRM (NHRM) (2).
Holotype: FMNH 69812; paratypes: FMNH, SMF 43953-55, 48085-86 , MVZ 42842-44, USNM [apaporiensis]
Syntypes: MNHN-RA 6623, 7836-7837 (3 specimens) [chiapasius]
Holotype: ANSP 9720 [fuscus] 
DiagnosisDESCRIPTION: Adults approximately 225 cm, average adults 125-175 cm; hatchlings 21-26 cm; 3-4 transverse rows of 6-10 slightly enlarged, irregularly arranged postoccipitals; 4-5 transverse rows of 2-4 nuchals, continuous with dorsals; 17-18 transverse rows of dorsals, 8-10 scales each; 13-14 double-crest caudal whorls; 23-24 single-crest caudal whorls; ventrals in 22-24 transverse rows, 12-15 scales each; fourth mandibular teeth received into internal socket in upper jaw, first and fourth mandibular teeth may pierce upper jaw in old adults; mandibular symphysis extends to level of fourth or fifth teeth; posterior teeth rooted in common elongate socket; dental formula 5+14-15/18-20.* Adults light brown, olive-brown, light yellow; dark crossbands on tail only; ventrals uniform cream or yellow; old adults lose almost all crossbanding and are uniformly dusky dark brown or olive-brown; hatchlings light brown or yellow with dark brown dorsal and caudal crossbands; 5-7 faint, dark bars often evident on sides of jaws, no longer visible if size 35 cm or greater (Schwartz & Henderson 1991: 666). 
CommentDistribution: Caiman crocodilus may be an occasional vagrant to the Grenada Bank. Not in Colombia (West Choco region) despite a report by F. Castro, pers. comm., 17 May 2013. Not in Oaxaca (Escobedo-Galván et al. 2015).

Subspecies after MEDEM 1983 and KING & BURKE 1989. Caiman crocodilus chiapasius is listed as a synonym of C. c. fuscus by WERMUTH & MERTENS 1977. 
EtymologyThe name crocodilus is apparently classical Latin for crocodile or lizard and is derived from the Greek word krokodeilos. 
References
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