Amazing Animals Of The Amazon Rainforest

The Amazon rainforest is full of beauty and mystery. The animals that call it home are no different. Some hide under the surface of the glistening water, waiting to ambush their prey. Others display vibrant colors while nesting in the trees. These are the best pictures of the majestic wildlife of the Amazon rainforest. You won’t believe what one caterpillar has to do to scare off predators!

The Pink River Dolphin Needs Our Help

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Photo Credit: Mark Carwardine / Barcroft Media / Getty Images

Playing in the waters of the Amazon here is the rare pink nose dolphin. The native mammal can grow up to eight feet, but you’d be hard-pressed to find one.

Living in remote parts of the Amazon, scientists believed the animal is endangered. They have yet to find a large enough community to take a population consensus. Don’t lose hope, though. Throughout this article, you’ll learn about conservation efforts to save animals rainforest wide!

Blink And You’ll Miss The Black Mantled Tamarin

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Photo Credit: Wolfgang Kaehler/LightRocket via Getty Images

Roaming the rainforest with a 28-centimeter body, the black mantled tamarin can be easy to miss. Living in Brazil, Columbia, and Peru, this squirrel-sized munchkin stays hidden in the trees.

Considered a “New World monkey,” tamarins are estimated to be 40 million years old. Luckily, they don’t look a day over 29!

The Arapaima Is One Big Fish


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The arapaima makes its living in the Amazon river. The big fish can grow up to 10 feet in length and weigh up to 450 pounds. The picture above shows an arapaima being brought back to shore.

Also called the pirarucu, the fish is an important food along the Amazon. Because of overfishing, the government has banned catching the arapaima from December until March while their numbers return. Next, we have a sloth hanging out in a tree waiting to say hi!

No Better Time For A Sloth To Hang Out


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This picture was taken in 1981 in Brazil. The sloth is casually hanging on a tree branch, living its best life. This particular sloth is one of four species of three-toed sloths that live in Brazil.

The three-toed sloth will spend up to 80 percent of its day sleeping. When active, it will feed and move very slowly.

Jaguars Just Want To Live


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An endangered species, this jaguar is laying on the shores of the Rio Negro in Northern Brazil. In Brazil, the jaguar is endangered, forcing the government to pass laws to conserve the species.

Large reserves have been set up in Brazil to help increase the jaguars’ population size. Our friend above lives on the reserve certified by the Brazilian Institute for the Environment and Natural Resources. Coming up, a monkey whose face is red from embarrassment!

The Bald Uakari Looks Really Embarrassed About Something

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Photo Credit: Jose Caldas/Brazil Photos/LightRocket via Getty Images

Seriously, what did this poor guy do that has his so embarrassed? He looks guilty of something at the very least!

Another “New World” monkey, the bald uakari can grow up to 18 inches and weigh eight pounds. LIving most of its life in trees above flooded forests, the bald uakari comes down to collect food once the water has washed away.

Yellow-Spotted River Turtles Have Lots Of Babies

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Photo Credit: Jose Caldas/Brazil Photos/LightRocket via Getty Images

The yellow-spotted-river turtle can lay up to 35 eggs at a time. Doing this twice a year helps ensure the survival of the species as the babies scurry from land to river as quickly as possible.

It is also one of the largest South American breeds of river turtle. By the time it reaches adulthood, a yellow-spotted river turtle can be 18 inches long and weigh as much as 18 pounds! If you think this turtle is impressive, our next animals best defense mechanism will blow you away!

A Caterpillar With A Tricky Defense Mechanism


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The caterpillar pictured above is not hiding behind bristles. These bristles are full of poison, ready to ruin any predator’s perfect day. The population of this possibly deadly animal is spreading rapidly across the Amazon rainforest.

Anyone venturing in the Amazon should be careful. As beautiful as this caterpillar is, it is not known if enough toxin can be produced to kill a human.

This Dwarf Caiman Isn’t That Small


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The Cuvier’s dwarf caiman can grow up to five feet long, putting the name in question. Hiding just underneath the surface, this predator lives in one of Ecuador’s largest oil reserves.

Exploitation of the resource has threatened the dwarf caiman’s population. To combat the problem, the government proposed to ban the further exploitation of the fields, leaving the oil permanently in the ground.

Beetles Are Bold And Beautiful


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As you can see, beetles in the Amazon rainforest are bold and beautiful. Bright colors separate this beetle from the pack. As beautiful as it is, it is also vital to the ecosystem of the Amazon.

In nature, beetles serve multiple purposes. They move seeds and pollen around, enriching the soil they live in. In some cultures, they are even used as a primary food source! You would never want to eat the beautiful butterfly coming up next!

The Bamboo Page Butterfly Flies Through The Canopy

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With wingspans up to fours and half inches long, the bamboo page butterfly is a breathtaking site. Living across South America, this butterfly spends most of its time flying through the rainforest canopy.

On rare occasions, the bamboo page butterfly gets really adventurous and flies up to Texas. It has been spotted in the Rio Grande Valley in the southern part of the lone star state.

Here’s Looking At You, Parrot!

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Taken in 1994, this photo is a close up of a mealy parrot living along the Amazon basin in Rio Napo. The parrot is one of the largest of its species, growing to around 16 inches and weighing just under two pounds.

The mealy parrot is known for its social behavior. The bird is often found in large flocks and loves to interact with other species, including macaws.

The Pink Toe Tarantula Is The Belle Of The Amazon Ball

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The pink toe tarantula gets its name for a pretty obvious reason. That’s not nail polish on its leg tips. This pretty spider was photographed on a palm leaf in French Guiana.

Oddly enough, young pink toe tarantulas are dark-toed with pink bodies. As they mature the color pattern reverses. Growing up to six inches in length, the pink toe tarantula usually jumps away when threatened, but have been known to attack in self-defense.

The Striped Owl Doesn’t Want To Be Seen

The Striped Owl Doesn’t Want To Be Seen

Photo Credit: Wolfgang Kaehler/LightRocket via Getty Images

This is a rare image of a juvenile striped owl in Ecuador. It is believed this young owl can grow up to 16 inches and weigh 20 pounds, but there’s a good chance we’ll never know.

These nocturnal animals rarely come out during the day and scientists know very little about them. It is believed to live along most of the Amazon rainforest and has stable population numbers. Coming up, the only monkey that eats mushrooms by choice!

Goeldi’s Marmosets Love Fungus

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Photo Credit: Jose Caldas/Brazil Photos/LightRocket via Getty Images

The Goeldi’s marmoset is the only species of monkey known to eat fungus. During the dry season, fungus becomes their primary food source. During the wet season, the monkey lives in the undergrowth and eats fruits, insects, frogs, and snakes.

Discovered in 1904, the Goeldi’s marmoset is considered a more recent evolution of “New World” monkey. It grows to a maximum length of nine inches.

Spot The Grasshopper


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This Amazonian grasshopper blends in perfectly with its environment. There’s no better way to avoid becoming lunch than blending in with your surroundings!

When spotted by a hungry predator, this green insect displays a vibrant array of colors, then jumps away. It can only jump a short distance, but that’s usually enough to find safety.

The Tiger Heron Stalks The River Banks

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Photo Credit: CHRISTOPHE SIMON/AFP/Getty Images

One of the larger birds of the Amazon rainforest, tiger herons can grow to nearly three feet and weigh up to four pounds. An ambush predator, the heron waits perfectly still at the bank of the river waiting for prey to get close before striking.

The tiger heron has a wide-ranging habitat that stretches from Columbia all the way to Mexico. One has even been spotted in Texas before. Coming up, hope for the future of turtles in the Amazon.

Baby Turtles Are Good Sign For The Population

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Photo Credit: CARL DE SOUZA/AFP/Getty Images

We’ve already shown you a full-grown turtle, but this baby turtle is a hopeful sign for the future of the species. In this picture, a volunteer conservationist holds up a baby turtle that is lucky to be alive.

Conservationists like this one search for turtle nests to move the eggs after poachers have found them. When we see a baby turtle alive like this, it warms our hearts.

A Tapir Is Not A Pig


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Although this animal from the Amazon looks a lot like a pig, it isn’t. Tapirs live in Central and South America in the rainforest. They come in five species and can weigh up to 700 pounds.

Tapirs are herbivores and eat mostly berries, plants, and leaves. They live between 25 and 30 years, both in the wild and in captivity.

Anacondas Are The King Of The River


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This 21-foot anaconda can grow another ten feet before reaching its maximum size. It can also weigh close to 600 pounds with a 12-inch girth. This is not an animal you want to come face-to-snout with.

Sometimes, however, it’s necessary. This big snake was rescued after being injured by a fisherman. Ten brave people helped carry the snake to safety and release back into the river.