Crocodiles don’t have feet or toes that are well-adapted for climbing, but that doesn’t keep them out of the trees.
Observations of crocodiles from Australia, Africa and North America show that four species could waddle up and along branches above water. The smaller crocodiles were the most agile climbers, making it as far as four meters up a tree and five meters along a branch, researchers report January 25 in Herpetology Notes.
The scientists speculate that the crocodiles move to the higher perches to sunbathe and regulate their temperatures and to get a better view of potential prey. The results may help scientists understand how well extinct species of crocodiles could climb and how they behaved, the authors say.