Alligator Trivia: Can You Tell the Tail?
by Jennifer Jordan
Residents in Florida and other Southern states probably know a thing or two about alligators. As “deer crossing” signs and “I brake for field mice” bumper stickers fill the lives of Northern residents, folks who live along the Gulf of Mexico find themselves pausing for alligator crossings and braking at the slightest hint of a tail. Perhaps it’s that old fashioned Southern hospitality, or a warm climate, but alligators certainly know where to make themselves at home.
Those of you who are residents of the South may have seen your fair share of alligators, but how much do you really know about the species? Take our quiz to find out….you’ll be everglade, er, ever glad you did.
1. There are two kinds of alligator species. One is the American Alligator, what is the other?
a. The South American Alligator
b. The Chinese Alligator
c. The Australian Alligator
d. The Crocodile
2. What is the scientific name of the American Alligator?
a. Alligator Mississippiensis
b. Alligator Sinensis
c. Alligator Crocodilia
d. Alligator Alley
3. How much does the average American Alligator weigh?
a. 500 pounds
b. 1200 pounds
c. 800 pounds
d. 600 pounds normally, 650 pounds around the holidays
4. Approximately how many years does the typical American Alligator live?
a. 150 years in captivity, 100 in the wild
b. 15 years in captivity, 10 in the wild
c. 50 years in captivity, 35 in the wild
d. A crock-a-while
5. In short periods, when they get a burst of energy, how fast can an American Alligator move?
a. 75 miles per hour
b. 30 miles per hour
c. 10 miles per hour
d. Just a hare faster than a tortoise
6. Both female and male American Alligators are known to hiss, but the males also do what?
d. Speak English
7. During times of reproduction, how many eggs does the female American Alligator typically lay?
a. Between 20 and 70
b. Between 10 and 15
c. Between 90 and 120
d. The alligator doesn’t lay eggs, only the Cadbury Bunny
8. How do the snouts of alligators and crocodiles differ?
a. Crocodiles have broader snouts
b. Alligators have broader snouts
c. Crocodiles have much shorter snouts
d. Alligators have prettier snouts; they have had some work done
9. Alligators do not have any of these.
a. Vocal chords
b. Sensory Pits
10. What are the water-filled trenches American Alligators make called?
a. Gator holes
b. Gator pools
c. Gator gapes
Answers: 1.b. The Chinese Alligator; 2. a. Alligator Mississippiensis; 3. c. 800 pounds; 4. c. 50 years, 35 in the wild; 5. b. 30 miles per hour; 6. a. Roar; 7. a. Between 20 and 70; 8. b. Alligators have broader snouts; 9. a. Vocal Cords; 10. a. Gator holes.
See how you did:
9-10 Correct: You sure know your stuff; Fang-tastic.
6-8 Correct: Maybe not perfect, but still pretty good; two thumbs up, and a tail.
3-5 Correct: Only mediocre. If you ever find yourself in the Everglades, you had better watch your back.
Less than 3: Oooh, not very good. Are you a gator hater?