American Costa Rica Crocodile: Visitors in Costa Rica can view the American crocodile at one of several prime spots, about 50 miles (85 km) west of San José, on the Tarcoles River. Here, they can be seen in abundance from the comfort and safety of a crocodile tour boat or the famous Crocodile bridge Costa Rica above the Tempisque River on the way to Jaco Costa Rica.
The American crocodile species inhabits the neotropical region of the Americas, from the Atlantic and Pacific coasts of southern Mexico to Peru and Venezuela. It is also found on several Caribbean islands and in southern Florida.
While these Costa Rica crocodiles may be found in riverways, they prefer some degree of salinity. That makes coastal areas their favored habitat, along with brackish lakes, mangrove swamps, lagoons and cays.
Mature males average 13 feet long, with females usually being smaller. American crocodiles have a more V-shaped snout than other large croc species. Coloration of adults is uniformly grayish-green with a white or yellowish underside. Juveniles have a dark cross-banding on the tail and back.
While the American crocodile is potentially dangerous to humans, it is lower on the aggression scale than other types of large crocs. It is more inclined to eat fish, reptiles, birds and small mammals, while most other large crocs will readily attack humans, deer, cattle and other large mammals.