Q:

How many teeth do alligators have?

A:

Quick Answer

According to the Smithsonian National Zoological Park, alligators have a total of 74 to 80 teeth in their mouths at one time. When the teeth inside an alligators mouth wear down, they are replaced with new teeth.

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Full Answer

The average alligator can grow between 2,000 and 3,000 teeth during its lifetime. One way to distinguish alligators from crocodiles is by looking at their teeth. The lower fourth tooth in an alligator’s lower jaw can fit neatly into a socket in the upper jaw. These teeth are not visible when the alligator's mouth is closed. Crocodiles do not have this tooth formation.

Alligators have extremely strong jaw muscles, which enable them to bite and grip their prey, including fish and mammals.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    How long do alligators live?

    A:

    According to LiveScience, American alligators can live up to 50 years in the wild. The American alligator can grow to lengths of up to 20 feet and weigh up to 1,000 pounds. On average, male alligators reach 11 feet, while females approach 8 feet.

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  • Q:

    What eats an alligator?

    A:

    Adult alligators have few predators other than humans, but they sometimes kill and eat each other. However, young alligators less than 4 feet long are killed by birds, raccoons, bobcats, otters, snakes, large bass and other alligators. Raccoons are also known to eat alligator eggs.

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  • Q:

    Where do alligators live?

    A:

    American alligators live in the southeastern portion of the United States, with largest populations residing in Florida and Louisiana. The Chinese alligator is native to China.

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  • Q:

    Do alligators eat humans?

    A:

    In rare cases, alligators will eat humans. They mostly eat fish, small mammals, turtles and snakes but will also eat dead animals and pets.

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