Did you know that the American alligator once lived with the dinosaurs? You could find them at San Jacinto Plaza in downtown El Paso from 1883 to 1965 too, before they were relocated to our zoo. Today, the plaza is still known as “La Plaza de los Lagartos,” or Alligator Plaza. A fiberglass sculpture at the plaza by nationally acclaimed local artist Luis Jimenez honors those original alligators.
- Adult male American alligators measure 10 to 15 feet in length, and can weigh up to 1,000 pounds. Females, like Brutus, are smaller, measuring 8 to almost 10 feet in length.
- They eat fish, snails and other invertebrates, birds, frogs and mammals.
- Even though they do not hibernate, American alligators undergo periods of dormancy when the weather becomes cold.
- As an alligator's teeth are worn down, they are replaced. An alligator can go through 3,000 teeth in a lifetime.
Species: A. Mississippiensis
The American alligator is found in the United States from North Carolina to the Rio Grande in Texas. Alligators are usually found in freshwater, slow-moving rivers. They also live in swamps, marshes and lakes.