Facts about this animal
The yacare is similar in appearance to Caiman crocodilus, and reaches a total length of 2.5 to 3 m. Like the common caiman, its scales have well-developed osteoderms. The less ossified flanks are used in the skin trade. The teeth are more visible than in the common caiman, whereby certain large teeth in the lower jaw may protrude through the top surface of the upper jaw.
Female yacares build mound nests, into which 21 to 38 eggs are usually laid, which they guard during incubation. Peak eggy-laying is in the middle of the rainy season, hatching occurs in March.
The diet of yacares consists mainly of fish and aquatic invertebrates, in particular snails.
Did you know?
that aquatic snails are an important part of the yacare caiman's diet?
|Name (Scientific)||Caiman yacare|
|Name (English)||Yacare Caiman|
|Name (French)||Caïman yacare|
|Local names||Brasil: Jacaré-do-pantanal|
|CITES Status||Appendix II|
|CMS Status||Not listed|
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|Range||Argentina , Bolivia , Brazil , Paraguay , Uruguay|
|Habitat||Wetlands, rivers and lakes|
|Wild population||Approx.: over 1,000,000 in 2009 (Crocodilian, 2012)|
|Zoo population||39 reported to ISIS (2005)|
In the Zoo
How this animal should be transported
For air transport, Container Note 42 of the IATA Live Animals Regulations should be followed.
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Why do zoos keep this animal
The yacaré caiman is currently not threatened with extinction and zoos keep the species primarily for educational purposes and as an ambassador species for their threatened freshwater habitats. As a medium-sized Caiman species, which is not too difficult to keep, it is well suited to represent, also in zoos with limited space and budget, as a keystone species the endangered marsh habitats of its south American range, together with other animals of this region in mixed-species exhibits.