Why Crocodiles Can’t Stick Their Tongue Out: An Explainer


Have you ever wondered why crocodiles can’t stick their tongue out? It’s a question that has puzzled scientists and animal lovers alike for years. In this blog post, we’ll explore the anatomy of these ancient reptiles and delve into the reasons behind their seemingly limited range of motion. Get ready to discover some fascinating facts about one of nature’s most formidable predators!

Introduction to Crocodiles

Crocodiles are often feared because of their large size and reputation for being dangerous. But did you know that these reptiles can’t stick their tongue out? In this article, we’ll explain why crocodiles can’t stick their tongue out and some other interesting facts about these creatures.

Crocodiles are reptiles that belong to the order Crocodilia. This order also includes alligators, caimans, and gharials. Crocodiles are the largest living reptiles on Earth. They can grow up to 20 feet (6 meters) in length and weigh over 2,000 pounds (900 kilograms).

Despite their large size, crocodiles are shy and reclusive animals. They spend most of their time in rivers, lakes, and swamps where they hunt for fish, amphibians, and small mammals. When they’re not hunting or basking in the sun, crocodiles often sleep with their mouths open. This behavior helps regulate their body temperature since they don’t have sweat glands.

One of the most distinguishing features of crocodiles is their long tail. This appendage is used for swimming, balance, and defense. Crocodiles also have sharp teeth that they use for tearing flesh. But did you know that these creatures can’t stick their tongue out?

The reason why crocodiles can’t stick their tongue out has to do with the anatomy of their mouth. Unlike other reptiles such as snakes and lizards, crocodiles have a secondary

Anatomy of a Crocodile’s Mouth

A crocodile’s mouth is full of sharp teeth that are perfect for tearing flesh. The roof of a crocodile’s mouth is also lined with bony plates, which provides extra protection against the powerful bites of other crocodiles. But what about the tongue?

The tongue of a crocodile is attached to the floor of the mouth and cannot be protruded. This is because the tongue is held in place by a series of muscles and ligaments that extend from the base of the skull to the lower jaw.

So why can’t crocodiles stick their tongue out? It’s all about function over form. The tongue is an important part of a crocodile’s feeding apparatus and it needs to be able to move quickly and efficiently to snatch prey. If it could be sticking out all willy-nilly, it wouldn’t be able to do its job properly!

Why Can’t Crocodiles Stick Their Tongue Out?

It’s a common misconception that crocodiles can’t stick their tongue out. In fact, they can! However, they can only do so for a very short period of time before their tongue starts to swell up and block their airway.

So why can’t crocodiles stick their tongue out for longer periods of time? It all has to do with the anatomy of their tongue. Crocodiles have a long, thin strip of muscle that runs along the length of their tongue. This muscle is what allows them to extend and retract their tongue.

However, this muscle is also what makes it difficult for crocodiles to keep their tongue out for extended periods of time. When the muscle contracts, it cuts off the blood supply to the tongue. Without a constant supply of blood, the tissue in the tongue starts to die. This results in swelling and eventually leads to the blockage of the airway.

So there you have it! The next time you see a crocodile sticking its out, remember that it’s not because they’re trying to be funny – they’re just trying to stay alive!

How Do Crocodiles Eat Without Sticking their Tongue Out?

Crocodiles have a long, thin, flat tongue that is attached to the floor of their mouth. Their teeth are sharp and pointy, which helps them grip their prey. When they want to eat something, they open their mouths wide and extend their tongues out to catch it.

They then close their mouths quickly, using their powerful jaw muscles to crush the food. They don’t use their tongues to chew; instead, they tear off chunks of meat and swallow them whole.

Crocodiles can go for months without eating because they digest food very slowly. This is due in part to the fact that they don’t have stomachs; instead, they have a series of pouches in their intestines that break down food over a long period of time.

What Would Happen If A Crocodile Could Stick Its Tongue Out?

If a crocodile could stick its tongue out, it would be able to catch prey much more easily. Additionally, it would be able to better regulate its body temperature and avoid predators.


We hope that this article has given you a better understanding of why crocodiles can’t stick their tongue out. As we’ve seen, the anatomy and physiology of these reptiles prevent them from doing so, as their tongues are firmly connected to the floor of their mouths. By learning more about how different species function in nature, we can gain a greater appreciation for the beauty and complexity of our natural world.


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