Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Chordata

Class: Reptilia

Order: Crocodilia

Family: Alligatoridae

Genus: Caiman

Species: C. crocodilus


Spectacled caimans are carnivores reptiles. The female Spectacled caimans lays 20 to 40 eggs in the mound made of rotting vegetation and soil. Decaying vegetation releases heat which keeps the eggs warm. Eggs hatch after incubation period of 90 days. Incubation temperature determines the gender of the hatchlings. Females develop from eggs incubated on temperature above 32 degrees of Celsius. Temperature below 29 degrees of Celsius leads to development of males. Females protect eggs during incubation and take care of the hatchlings during the first few months of their life. Spectacled caimans often form nurseries where one female takes care of numerous babies. Young caimans stay in the group until they reach the age of 18 months. Spectacled caimans reach sexual maturity at the age of 4 to 7 years.

Natural History

Spectacled caiman is a reptile that belongs to the family of alligators. There are 3 subspecies of spectacled caimans that can be found in Central and South America. Spectacled caimans inhabit lowland wetlands. Spectacled caimans can reach 6.5 to 8 feet in length and 15 to 88 pounds of weight. Males are much larger than females. Young spectacled caimans are yellow colored and covered with dark spots. Adult animals are grey-green colored. They spend almost entire life in the slow-moving rivers, ponds and lakes. These animals are hunted because of their meat and eggs. Luckily, population of spectacled caimans is large and stable and they are not on the list of endangered animals.