Most Americans are unaware that there are crocodiles, including genuinely huge ones, living in South Florida. Actually, these fascinating creatures have staged a dramatic comeback. It’s a wildlife success story with some interesting twists.
The global inventory of crocodilians includes 23 species. One of them, the American crocodile (Crocodylus acutus), is a New World species found in some areas of Central America, the Caribbean, and South America (Venezuela and Peru). A small population of these crocs also inhabits parts of southern Florida, including Everglades National Park and Biscayne National Park. Its range there overlaps that of the alligator, making this the only place in the world where crocodiles and alligators coexist. The size of Florida’s croc population has been estimated at anywhere between 500 and 2,000 individuals, and it seems that the upper end of that range is a reasonable figure.
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