Q:

Can a crocodile stick out its tongue?

A:

Quick Answer

Due to a restrictive membrane, crocodiles can't stick out their tongues. This membrane keeps the crocodile's tongue attached to the roof of its mouth rather than the base. The inability to stick out their tongues differentiates crocodiles from their relatives, the alligators.

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Full Answer

Because of the unique anatomy of the crocodile's tongue and the tissue called the palatal flap at the back of the throat, a crocodile can keep out excess water or air that sifts through its teeth. Because of this, crocodiles, who primarily hunt underwater and use their mouths to catch prey, can open their mouths below the surface in preparation for a kill. Crocodiles also have a salt gland in their tongues and an opening on the tongue's surfaces.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What is a Utan crocodile?

    A:

    Utan is the name of the largest crocodile in captivity in the United States, as of 2014. The reptile was born in Thailand in 1964 and was introduced to the United States by Alligator Adventure in 2002. Utan is 20 feet long and weighs more than 2,000 pounds.

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  • Q:

    How fast can a crocodile run?

    A:

    Most crocodiles can sprint at a maximum speed of 6 to 7 miles per hour. The fastest crocodile on record was clocked at 11 miles per hour, during a full gallop. By contrast, top human race-walkers reach speeds of 8 miles per hour without breaking into a full run.

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    How much does a crocodile weigh?

    A:

    There are 14 species of crocodile of varying sizes. The largest species, the saltwater crocodile, can weigh up to 4400 pounds but usually weighs from 2202 pounds to 2643 pounds, whereas the smallest, the dwarf crocodile, weighs from 40 to 70 pounds. In all species, males are larger than females.

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  • Q:

    What are the adaptations of a crocodile?

    A:

    Some adaptations of the crocodile include the ability to regulate its metabolism, its strong stomach, its armored body and its keen senses. These adaptations have allowed the crocodile to survive for millions of years as the closest creatures the modern world has to dinosaurs.

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