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An alligator is a crocodilian in the genus Alligator of the family Alligatoridae. The two extant species are the American alligator (A. mississippiensis) and the Chinese alligator (A. sinensis). The name "alligator" is probably an anglicized form of el lagarto, the Spanish term for "the lizard", which early Spanish explorers and settlers in Florida called the alligator.