- any of several tropical American crocodilians of the genus Caiman and allied genera: some are endangered.
Origin of caiman
Examples from the Web for caiman
Ours is the Caiman model, a 6x6 behemoth that weighs in at over 15 tons and makes Humvees shrivel up with feelings of inadequacy.
The Caiman offers a range of option packages, from bristling-with-machine-guns, to monster-truck-field-hospital.
There are natives who dare dive for the caiman and rip it up.The Philippine Islands
There is another means which the Indians use to capture the Caiman.Reptiles and Birds
The local name "caiman" refers to both Crocodylus and to Caiman, for, in general, the natives do not distinguish between the two.
Peters (1954:10) refuted Gadow's record on the basis that Gadow's collections contained no specimens of Caiman.
The jaguar, with his pliable paws and sharp subtle claws, is to them a more dreaded assailant than the crocodile or caiman.The Forest Exiles
- a variant spelling of cayman
Word Origin and History for caiman
also cayman, 1570s, from Portuguese or Spanish caiman, from Carib acayouman "crocodile," or perhaps from a Congo African word applied to the reptiles in the new world by African slaves. "The name appears to be one of those like anaconda and bom, boma, which the Portuguese or Spaniards very early caught up in one part of the world, and naturalized in another." [OED]