The Spectacled Caiman, also called Common Caiman, is native
to much of Central and northern South America. The name
"spectacled" is said to relate to the bony ridge behind the
eye resembling a pair of spectacles, but: - several other
crocodilians have this feature (many crocodiles and the
alligator) and - whoever named this needs to see an
Caimans are smaller than crocodiles. The Spectacled Caiman
can reach lengths of some 2 metres (just over 6 feet).
usual habitat is freshwater but it can tolerate brakish or
salt water. They have benefitted from human hunting of
larger crocodiles since their leather is not good quality.
Like several lizards in the tropics, they can regulate body
temperature by becoming lighter or darker.