Found only in eastern China, the Chinese alligator usually attains a length of 5 feet and a weight of 80 pounds. Female alligators are known to be smaller than male alligators. Compared to American alligators, Chinese alligators are much smaller. There are only two known species of alligators in the world and they are Chinese and American alligators.
Its population in the wild has been reduced to only 100 to 200 and the alligators are primarily located in the Jiangsu, Zhejiang, and Anhui province. The Chinese alligator is protected under Law of Wildlife Conservation. Some 10,000 Chinese alligators are living in captivity in the Anhui Research Center. Humans are their chief enemy but Chinese alligators are not hunted because their skin is not popular for making leather products. Chinese alligators are solitary creatures, preferring to live in swamps and ponds in the lower Yangtze reaches. Its scientific name is Alligator sinensis.
The Chinese alligator is on the CITES list of species which places the animal under intense protection because it is endangered. The Chinese alligator feasts on clams and shells using its blunt teeth. They typically hunt at night and have been known to include fish, frogs and rats in their diet. Younger invertebrates are known to eat flies.
Chinese alligators lay 10-40 eggs per year and the female stays close to the nest in order to protect the eggs. Sexual maturity is reached 5 to 7 years. Chinese alligators are also known as Yangtze alligators, China alligators, Tou Lungs, Yow Lungs, and T’o. Chinese alligators have an average life span of 50 years in the wild and 70 years in captivity.