Schneider’s Dwarf Caiman

Schneider’s Dwarf Caiman

Scientific Name: Paleosuchus trigonatus
Common Names: Smooth-fronted Caiman, Schneider’s Smooth-fronted Caiman

Maximum adult length: 1.8 metres (5.9 feet)


N.B. Exceptionally large specimens can be found in all species of crocodilian.


Schneider’s dwarf caiman, also known as smooth-fronted caiman or Schneider’s smooth-fronted caiman, is slightly larger than its close relative, Cuvier’s dwarf caiman. Males reach an adult length of 1.8 metres (5.9 feet), with the largest recorded specimen being 2.6 metres (8.5 feet). Its preferred habitat is freshwater river systems, principally shallower streams, but adults often spend much of their time in burrows away from water. This caiman walks with a distinctive head-raised posture.



IUCN Red List (September, 2014)


At the zoo

We are currently home to two Schneider’s dwarf caimans.


In September 2013, we introduced male and female Schneider’s dwarf caiman to each other. It’s not the first time we have tried cohabitation of this species. In previous attempts the male has not enjoyed the company of the female and consequently fights have broken out. Pairing between this species in captivity is very difficult, however the early signs are positive.


Our hope is that a captive breeding program can be established in order that we can learn more about this highly secretive species and make a contribution to their on-going worldwide study.



  • Cameron Bain
  • Grace Norris
  • Kian Vine

Adopt an animal at Crocodiles of the World including our Schneider’s dwarf caiman. Click here for information

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