Tuesday, April 20, 2010

MFS - Strange But True - Creatures / Animals 13

Updated on MFS - Strange But True - Creatures / Animals 13 .Gharial a.k.a. Indian Gavial

The gharial (Hindi : घऱियाल, Marathi : सुसर Susar) (Gavialis gangeticus), sometimes called the
Indian gavial or gavial, is one of two surviving members of the family Gavialidae, a long-established group of crocodile-like reptiles with long, narrow jaws. It is one of the three crocodilians found in India, the other being the Mugger crocodile and the Saltwater crocodile.
It is a critically endangered species. The gharial is one of the longest of all living crocodilians.


The fossil history of the Gavialoidea is quite well known, with the earliest examples diverging from the other crocodilians in the late Cretaceous. The most distinctive feature of the group is the very long, narrow snout, which is an adaptation to a diet of small fish. Although gharials have sacrificed the great mechanical strength of the robust skull and jaw that most crocodiles and alligators have, and in consequence cannot prey on large creatures, the reduced weight and water resistance of their lighter skull and very narrow jaw gives gharials the ability to catch rapidly moving fish, using a side-to-side snapping motion.Read more about this animal on MFS,with 1 videoclip.

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