Can Crocodile Breath Underwater? (Do Crocodiles Actually Breath In Water?)

Crocodile is an animal that stays on land and also can stay in the water for a long time. If you have seen a crocodile on land and at a time, it goes into water and stay submerged for hours, you did be curious to find out how this animal could be able to breath on both land and on water.

Can crocodile breathe underwater? No, Crocodile cannot breathe underwater, but they can stay submerged in water for 1 hour or more by reducing their heartbeat to 1 or 3 beats a minute, oxygen are supplied only to the hard-working parts of the body that need it the most, thereby making crocodiles to stay under water for a long time.

Now you have understood why and how crocodiles could be able to stay submerged under water for quite a long time, some other questions you might want to ask are – How long can crocodile hold their breath underwater?, Do crocodiles have gills or lung?, Can crocodile drown? Can it see underwater?.

Keep reading, as we will answer you questions and satisfy your curiosity.


As we all know by now, crocodile is a land animal which breath oxygen just like humans and every other land animals do, but the only difference is that they dwell very much on water and does stay submerged underwater for a long time with the help of the subsidization of their heartbeat and reduction of the circulation of oxygenated blood in their body, thereby supplying oxygen to only the active parts of theirs body.

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This do allow them stay underwater for a long time while holding their breathe.

Now the question is, how long can they hold their breath underwater?

Well the amount of time a crocodile can hold their breath depends on its sex and size.

According to research, female crocodiles has the potential to spend more time submerged underwater water than the male, also big crocodiles could hold their breathe for a long time than smaller ones, so on an average, a female grown-up crocodile could stay submerged for about 2 or more hours while the male counterpart could stay up to 1 hour and some minutes submerged.

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Smaller crocodiles could spend less than 1 hour underwater.


By now you might be wondering if crocodile have gills or Lungs. As we have learned above, crocodiles cannot breath underwater, that left one option, which is, it does breath on land, just like any other land animal.

For them to breath on land and not on water only justify the fact that they make use of lungs as any other land animals, not gills.

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Gills are only used by animals that live in water, which crocodile is not one.

Although there are few water creatures that make use of gills, but could stay on land where the air is moist and breath, such as crawfish.

No animal that make use of lungs could try to breath underwater and succeed, so crocodile cannot breath underwater, simply because it have lungs and not gills.


As crocodiles could not breath underwater, due to the fact they have lungs and not gills, the next question you might be wondering is ” Can crocodile drown?”

Can crocodile drown? Yes crocodiles could drown when they stay submerged underwater for a very long time and exhaust all the oxygen they have.

They normally cease to stay underwater and either float on water, keeping their eyes and nose out to breath or come out totally from the water in order to breath, so that they don’t get drown once they have exhausted their oxygen.

The fact is, they could drown, since they can’t breath in water, but it is very very rare for them to drown because they are good swimmer and could swim very fast, infact faster than the fastest human swimmer.

For a crocodile to drown in water, it means the animal is not well or something is holding it underwater.


Since they can stay submerged underwater, hunting for food etc, the question is, could they actually see underwater?

Can crocodiles see underwater? Yes crocodiles do see underwater and very clearly, which is why they could be able to hunt for food in water.

They do survive by feeding on other animals and fish which they could kill, inorder to get their preys, they do stay submerged in water and monitor unsuspecting prey, which they could jump out of the water at anytime and catch their prey.

They could be able to do this because they could see underwater.

Crocodile is said to have a special eyes which does enable it to see very clear on water.


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