The alligators power is derived from is large jaw muscles. When these muscles clamp they can produce a biting force of just under 3,000lbs. The reason that they do not have very much strength opening their mouth is that they use a different muscle to open their mouth. This muscle do not need to be as powerful and thus is much smaller and weaker.
Just like a humans mouth we can produce about 170lbs of biting force and if you try and pry your mouth open it is very difficult. Holding it shut, however, proves to be fairly easy.
Alligators has the strongest bite in the world. Their jaws shut with a force of 2125 pounds and some can reach 3000 pounds! Comparatively, bone-crushing hyenas have a force of 1000 pounds and us humans can chomp at 170 pounds. It is not necessary for alligators to open their mouths with such a force, so it is much weaker going up than coming down.
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