Black Caiman

Black Caiman Melanosuchus niger

Black Caiman…

Black Caiman Melanosuchus niger
Photo taken by Rigelus cc3.0

The black caiman is one of the largest species in the alligator family — it can grow to be 16.4 to 19.7 feet (5 to 6 meters) long. Their skin is dark in color, with pale yellow or white dots on the sides.

They usually hunt at night, using their sensitive hearing and sight to catch fish, turtles, birds, capybaras and sometimes larger mammals. Their teeth are made to grab their food, but not to kill or chew it; therefore they normally drown their prey and then, if it’s small enough, swallow it whole. Larger prey they leave to rot, and when it has decayed enough, the caiman feeds on it.

Black Caiman
Black Caiman by David Stanley cc2.0

Female caimans lay eggs in large nests they build with soil and vegetation. They lay forty to sixty-five eggs, which hatch in about 6 weeks. Guarding the eggs is no easy task, since the mother has to contend with blood-sucking flies that gather around her eyes and leave them bloodshot. When the leathery eggs are ready, the mother gently pierces them to help the young break out more easily. Afterward, she takes them into her mouth and deposits them in a safe water source.

Black Caiman are featured in the following books:
25 River Monsters
101 Facts… Crocodiles!

The YouTube video playlist below contains videos about Black Caiman. Details of the videos featured are underneath.

The Playlist:

  1. Python Hunters : Catching Black Caimans by NatGeoWild
  2. Secret filming of a Black Caiman – Deadly 60
  3. Amazon River Crocodiless by oasishdchannel
  4. Landing a Ferocious Black Caiman River Monsters by AnimalPlanettt
  5. Giant Crocodilians by NationalGeographic
  6. Black Caiman by christian declercq
  7. 15 Most Dangerous Animals in the Amazon Rainforest by IP Factly


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