We all know that many birds feed their young. Nowadays, many of us are also familiar with the idea that hadrosaurs and other dinosaurs might also have fed their young. Far less well known is the possibility that crocodilians may do this too, at least sometimes. As with those fruit-eating alligators, I have John Brueggen of the St. Augustine Alligator Farm Zoological Park to thank for the video you see here (and thanks, again, to Tim Isles for bringing this subject to my attention in the first place).
In the video shown here, a female Siamese crocodile Crocodylus siamensis allows her babies to eat meat literally from her mouth.
As John described in a longer article (here), what appears to be feeding behaviour has been reported in other species, including the American alligator Alligator mississippiensis, Orinoco croc C. intermedius and Broad-snouted caiman Caiman latirostris. It has also been seen more than once among the Siamese crocs at St. Augustine. Furthermore, the behaviour has been filmed in other species (namely the Chinese alligator A. sinensis).
Obviously, members of these species do not practise feeding behaviour on a regular basis (otherwise it would have been commonly observed). So, do they do it only on very rare occasions? Or is it that this feeding is not deliberate at all, but merely opportunistic on the part of the babies? For now, it remains yet another of those neat and potentially significant bits of behaviour where more data and more observations are needed.