14/03/2012 18:58 GMT | Updated 14/03/2012 18:58 GMT

Crocodiles Have The Strongest Bite Force For Any Living Animal

Have you ever wondered which living beast has the most powerful bite? Would you put your money on a wolf or a shark? Or who would you bet on winning a scrap between a caiman or a gharial?

Well, just in case any of this has crossed your mind, we can reveal the strongest bite force measured for any living animal belongs to the crocodile.

The snappy study, led by Gregory M. Erickson of Florida State University, and published in journal PLoS ONE, measured the bite forces, as well as tooth pressures, for mature adults from all 23 living crocodilian species, including crocodiles, alligators, caimans, and gharials.

The strongest biter was a saltwater crocodile at 3,700 pounds. It also generated record setting pressures exceeding 360,000 pounds per square inch.

"Our study has allowed for a comprehensive understanding of the relationships between the anatomy, biomechanics, performance, and ecology among living and fossil crocodilians from which the secrets to their 85 million year success can be gleaned.

"Notably, the largest extinct crocodilians generated bite forces in excess of 23,000 pounds, values two-fold greater than T. rex."

The researchers found that bite force was correlated with body size, but showed surprisingly little correlation with tooth form, diet, jaw shape or jaw strength.

Click here for a slideshow of more bitey beasts