Three caiman lizards born in Chicago

November 3, 2005

Chicago's Shedd Aquarium has announced the birth of three caiman lizards, the first born in a North America zoo or aquarium.

Not much is known about the South American caiman lizard, but Shedd scientists told the Chicago Sun-Times the male is no slouch when it comes to courtship.

The 2- to- 4-foot-long male will reportedly chase the female, gnawing her tail for up to an hour, even as she drags him through water. When she tires, he'll eventually turn her over and the pair will mate.

Shedd's senior aquarist, Jim Watson, said the mother, one of two female lizards at the aquarium's Amazon Rising exhibit, laid eight eggs, producing the three offspring.

Their are three adult caimans on display at Shedd: two females called Circle and Horseshoe, after the distinctive shapes on their heads -- and one male, referred to, simply as Male.

The newly hatched caimans will grow to 3 to 6 pounds -- or 38 to 78 times the size at birth. Their gender, now unknown, will become apparent by the color on their heads -- males display red, females more orange, Watson told the Sun-Times.

Copyright 2005 by United Press International

Related Stories

Recommended for you

NASA's space-station resupply missions to relaunch

November 29, 2015

NASA's commercial space program returns to flight this week as one of its private cargo haulers, Orbital ATK, is to launch its first supply shipment to the International Space Station in more than 13 months.

CERN collides heavy nuclei at new record high energy

November 25, 2015

The world's most powerful accelerator, the 27 km long Large Hadron Collider (LHC) operating at CERN in Geneva established collisions between lead nuclei, this morning, at the highest energies ever. The LHC has been colliding ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.