Nile crocodile in the Selous Game Reserve, southern Tanzania - photo by David Liebst
Crocodiles have some of the strongest bite forces in the animal kingdom.
The teeth on the lower jaw of a crocodile fit into grooves on the outside of the top jaw making both the upper and lower teeth visible when the mouth is closed.
Crocodiles are able to replace each of their approximately 80 teeth up to 50 times in their 35 to 75-year lifespan. They are the only non-mammalian vertebrates with tooth sockets. Next to each full-grown tooth there is a small replacement tooth and an odontogenic stem cell in the dental lamina in standby, which can be activated when required.Tooth replacement slows significantly and eventually stops as the animal grows old.
Crocodile lying with mouth open to maintain cool temperature - photo by David Liebst in Selous
Photo showing holes in upper lip of crocodile - by Zach Mligo of Lake Manze Camp, Selous
Grigg, Gordon; Kirshner, David (2015). Biology and Evolution of Crocodylians. CSIRO Publishing. ISBN 9781486300662.
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Grigg and Gans, pp. 227–228.