Caimans in Kabalebo: Spectacled caiman!
The Spectacled Caiman (Caiman crocodilus) is seen here with its head nearly above the water. A well-camouflaged semi-aquatic predator, but also a common one seen frequently in Kabalebo.
The Spectacled Caiman can reach a length of at least 2.5 meters. This makes this reptile one of the largest caimans in South-America (the largest one is the Black Caiman). Their habitat range from Mexico and Central America, Peru, Argentina, Columbia, Venezuela, Brazil, the Guyana's (British-Guyana, Suriname and French-Guyana) and even in Trinidad & Tobago.
They are active during both day- and nighttime, hunting on a wide variety of food: insects, fish, frogs, water birds and small mammals. In the pictures below you can see Spectacled Caimans showing off their trophies: a toad and a fish.
They are well-camouflaged semi-aquatic predators as they stay very quiet for a long time on the river banks and open areas…. often mistaken for logs. This is usually their strategy to catch off-guard birds thinking it is a safe spot to land on.
The Spectacled Caiman is the only species with a curved bony ridge, resembling the bridge of eye glasses. When they are heading into the water only their eyes and the top of their snout are visible above the water. Even though they are common caimans it is always a spectacular experience to spot them in the wild.
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