The American Alligator, Alligator mississippiensis, (known colloquially as simply gator) is one of the two living species of Alligator, a genus within the family Alligatoridae. The American Alligator is only native to the Southeastern United States, where it inhabits wetlands that frequently overlap with human-populated areas. It is larger than the other extant alligator species, the Chinese Alligator.
The American Alligator has a large, slightly rounded body, with thick limbs, a broad head, and a very powerful tail. They generally have an olive, brown, gray or nearly black color with a creamy white underside. Algae-laden waters produce greener skin, while tannic acid from overhanging trees can produce often darker skin. Adult male alligators are typically 13 to 14.7 feet long (3.96 to 4.48 meters), while adult females average 9.8 feet (2.99 meters).