List of animal species. Contains the name and a brief summary.
The aardvark ( ARD-vark; Orycteropus afer) is a medium-sized, burrowing, nocturnal mammal native to Africa. It is the only living species of the order Tubulidentata, although other prehistoric species and genera of Tubulidentata are known. Unlike other insectivores, it has a long pig-like snout, which is used to sniff out food. It roams over most of the southern two-thirds of the African continent, avoiding areas that are mainly rocky. A nocturnal feeder, it subsists on ants and termites, which it will dig out of their hills using its sharp claws and powerful legs. It also digs to create burrows in which to live and rear its young. It receives a "least concern" rating from the IUCN, although its numbers seem to be decreasing. Aardvarks are afrotheres, a clade which also includes elephants, manatees, and hyraxes.
The Abyssinian is a breed of domestic short-haired cat with a distinctive "ticked" tabby coat, in which individual hairs are banded with different colors. In nomenclature terms, they are also known as simply Abys. The breed is named for Abyssinia (now called Ethiopia), where it is believed to have originated.In terms of the domestication of cats, analysis has found the Abyssinian to be one of the oldest types of the animal in existence, with mummified cats in Egyptian tombs studied by archaeologists appearing similar to the modern breed's standards. Although regarded as comparatively obscure in the past as a breed compared to others, the Abyssinian currently ranks among the top five most popular breeds worldwide.The breed's distinctive appearance, seeming long, lean, and finely colored compared to other cats, has been analogized to that of human fashion models. Personality-wise, the cats traditionally display active, curious attitudes in which they frequently follow owners around and encourage play, being regarded as the "Clowns of the Cat Kingdom." Their dog-like characteristics also involve a particular sense of affection and desire for interaction.
The Adélie penguin (Pygoscelis adeliae) is a species of penguin common along the entire coast of the Antarctic continent, which is its only habitat. It is the most widely spread penguin species, as well as the most southerly distributed of all penguins, along with the emperor penguin. It is named after Adélie Land, in turn named for Adèle Dumont d'Urville, the wife of French explorer Jules Dumont d'Urville, who first discovered this penguin in 1840. Adélie penguins obtain their food by both predation and foraging, with a diet of mainly krill and fish.
The Affenpinscher , also known as the Monkey Terrier, is a terrier-like toy Pinscher breed of dog.
The Afghan Hound is a hound that is distinguished by its thick, fine, silky coat and its tail with a ring curl at the end. The breed is selectively bred for its unique features in the cold mountains of Afghanistan. Its local name is Tāžī Spay (Pashto: تاژي سپی) or Sag-e Tāzī (Dari Persian: سگ تازی). Other names for this breed areTāzī, Balkh Hound, Baluchi Hound, Barakzai Hound, Shalgar Hound, Kabul Hound, Galanday Hound or sometimes incorrectly African Hound. They have the ability to run and turn well. They are also 64 to 69 centimeters tall and weigh 23 to 27 kilograms.
African Bush Elephant
The African bush elephant (Loxodonta africana), also known as the African savanna elephant, is the largest living terrestrial animal with bulls reaching a shoulder height of up to 3.96 m (13.0 ft). Both sexes have tusks, which erupt when they are 1–3 years old and grow throughout life. It is distributed across 37 African countries and inhabits forests, grasslands and woodlands, wetlands and agricultural land. It is a social mammal, traveling in herds composed of cows and their offspring. Adult bulls usually live alone or in small bachelor groups. It is a herbivore, feeding on grasses, creepers, herbs, leaves and bark. The description of the species was published in 1797. Since 2004, it has been listed as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List. It is threatened foremost by habitat destruction, and in parts of its range also by poaching for meat and ivory.
A civet () is a small, lean, mostly nocturnal mammal native to tropical Asia and Africa, especially the tropical forests. The term civet applies to over a dozen different mammal species. Most of the species diversity is found in southeast Asia. The best-known civet species is the African civet, Civettictis civetta, which historically has been the main species from which a musky scent used in perfumery was obtained. The word civet may also refer to the distinctive musky scent produced by the animals. In 2002–03, civets sold for meat in local markets of China's Yunnan province carried the SARS virus from horseshoe bats to humans. The resulting viral outbreak killed 774 people in 2002–2003.
African Clawed Frog
The African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis, also known as the xenopus, African clawed toad, African claw-toed frog or the platanna) is a species of African aquatic frog of the family Pipidae. Its name is derived from the three short claws on each hind foot, which it uses to tear apart its food. The word Xenopus means "strange foot" and laevis means "smooth". The species is found throughout much of Sub-Saharan Africa (Nigeria and Sudan to South Africa), and in isolated, introduced populations in North America, South America, and Europe. All species of the family Pipidae are tongueless, toothless and completely aquatic. They use their hands to shove food in their mouths and down their throats and a hyobranchial pump to draw or suck things in their mouth. Pipidae have powerful legs for swimming and lunging after food. They also use the claws on their feet to tear pieces of large food. They have no external eardrums, but instead subcutaneous cartilaginous disks that serve the same function. They use their sensitive fingers and sense of smell to find food. Pipidae are scavengers and will eat almost anything living, dying, or dead and any type of organic waste.
African Forest Elephant
The African forest elephant (Loxodonta cyclotis) is one of the two living African elephant species. It is native to humid forests in West Africa and the Congo Basin. It is the smallest of the three living elephant species, reaching a shoulder height of 2.4 m (7 ft 10 in). Both sexes have straight, downpointing tusks, which erupt when they are 1–3 years old. It lives in family groups of up to 20 individuals. Since it forages on leaves, seeds, fruit, and tree bark, it has been referred to as the 'megagardener of the forest'. It contributes significantly to maintain the composition and structure of the Guinean Forests of West Africa and the Congolese rainforests. The first scientific description of the species was published in 1900. During the 20th century, the population declined due to hunting to less than 30,000 individuals estimated in 2013. It is threatened by habitat loss, fragmentation and poaching. The conservation status of populations varies across range countries.
African Palm Civet
The African palm civet (Nandinia binotata), also known as the two-spotted palm civet, is a small feliform mammal widely distributed in sub-Saharan Africa. It is listed as Least Concern on the IUCN Red List.
The African penguin (Spheniscus demersus), also known as the Cape penguin, and South African penguin, is a species of penguin confined to southern African waters. Like all extant penguins, it is flightless, with a streamlined body, and wings stiffened and flattened into flippers for a marine habitat. Adults weigh on average 2.2–3.5 kg (4.9–7.7 lb) and are 60–70 cm (24–28 in) tall. It has distinctive pink patches of skin above the eyes and a black facial mask; the body upperparts are black and sharply delineated from the white underparts, which are spotted and marked with a black band. The pink gland above their eyes helps them to cope with changing temperatures. When the temperature gets hotter, the body of the African penguin sends more blood to these glands to be cooled by the air surrounding it. This then causes the gland to turn a darker shade of pink.The African penguin is a pursuit diver and feeds primarily on fish and squid. Once extremely numerous, the African penguin is declining rapidly due to a combination of several threats and is classified as endangered. It is a charismatic species and is popular with tourists. Other vernacular names of the species include black-footed penguin and jackass penguin, which it is called due to its loud donkey-like bray, although several related species of South American penguins produce the same sound.
African Tree Toad
A tree frog is any species of frog that spends a major portion of its lifespan in trees, known as an arboreal state. Several lineages of frogs among the Neobatrachia have given rise to tree frogs, although they are not closely related to each other. Millions of years of convergent evolution have resulted in very similar morphology even in species that aren't very closely related.
African Wild Dog
The African wild dog (Lycaon pictus) is a canine native to sub-Saharan Africa. It is the largest indigenous canine in Africa, and the only extant member of the genus Lycaon, which is distinguished from Canis by dentition highly specialised for a hypercarnivorous diet, and a lack of dewclaws. It is estimated that about 6,600 adults including 1,400 mature individuals live in 39 subpopulations that are all threatened by habitat fragmentation, human persecution and outbreaks of diseases. As the largest subpopulation probably consists of less than 250 individuals, the African wild dog is listed as endangered on the IUCN Red List since 1990.The African wild dog is a highly social animal, living in packs with separate dominance hierarchies for males and females. Uniquely among social carnivores, the females rather than the males disperse from the natal pack once sexually mature. The young are allowed to feed first on carcasses. The species is a specialised diurnal hunter of antelopes, which it catches by chasing them to exhaustion. Like other canids, the African wild dog regurgitates food for its young, but this action is also extended to adults, to the point of being central to their social life. Its natural enemies are lions and hyenas: the former will kill the canids where possible whilst hyenas are frequent kleptoparasites.Although not as prominent in African folklore or culture as other African carnivores, it has been respected in several hunter-gatherer societies, particularly those of the predynastic Egyptians and the San people.
The Hokkaido (北海道犬, Hokkaidō-inu or Hokkaidō-ken) is a breed of dog originating from Japan. Other names for the breed include Ainu-ken, Seta, Ainu dog. In Japan, its name is sometimes shortened to Dō-ken (道犬). The Hokkaido is native to the prefecture of the same name in Japan.
The Airedale Terrier (often shortened to "Airedale"), also called Bingley Terrier and Waterside Terrier, is a dog breed of the terrier type that originated in the valley (dale) of the River Aire, in the West Riding of Yorkshire, England. It is traditionally called the "King of Terriers" because it is the largest of the terrier breeds. The Airedale was bred from the Old English Black and Tan Terrier (now known as the Welsh Terrier), the Otterhound and probably some other Terrier breeds, and has contributed to other dog breeds, such as the Yorkshire Terrier. Originally bred to serve as a versatile hunting and all around working farm dog, in Britain this breed has also been used as a war dog, guide dog and police dog. In the United States, this breed has been used to hunt big game, upland birds, and water fowl, and serve in many other working capacities.
The Pyrenean Mountain Dog, known as the Great Pyrenees in North America, is a large breed of dog used as a livestock guardian dog. It should not be confused with the Pyrenean Mastiff. As late as 1874 the breed was not completely standardized in appearance, with two major subtypes recorded, the Western and the Eastern. They are related to several other large, white, European livestock guardian dogs (LGD), including the Maremma Sheepdog (Italy), the Kuvasz (Hungary), the Akbash (Turkey) and the Polish Tatra Sheepdog or Polski Owczarek Podhalański, and somewhat less closely to the Newfoundland and the St. Bernard. According to the Great Pyrenees Club of America, the Pyrenean Mountain Dog is naturally nocturnal and aggressive with any predators that may harm its flock. However, the breed can typically be trusted with small, young and helpless animals of any kind due to its natural guardian instinct.The Pyrenean Mountain Dog breed experienced a dramatic falloff in the number of U.S. AKC breed registrations from 2000 to 2010. The breed was ranked at No. 45 in 2000 but by 2010 had dropped to No. 71. In 2013 the breed was ranked No. 69. Other large breeds in the same working group classification, the Newfoundland and the St. Bernard, have fared far better in maintaining their breed rankings, being ranked No. 44 and No. 45, respectively, in 2010.
The Akita (秋田犬, Akita-inu, Japanese pronunciation: [akʲita.inɯ]) is a large breed of dog originating from the mountainous regions of northern Japan. There are two separate varieties of Akita: a Japanese strain, commonly called Akita Inu (inu means dog in Japanese) or Japanese Akita, and an American strain, known as the Akita or American Akita. The Japanese strain comes in a narrow palette of colors, with all other colors considered atypical of the breed, while the American strain comes in all dog colors. The Akita has a short double-coat similar to that of many other northern spitz breeds such as the German Shepherd or Siberian Husky, but long-coated dogs can also be found in many litters due to a recessive gene. The Akita is a powerful, independent and dominant breed, commonly aloof with strangers but affectionate with family members. As a breed, Akitas are generally hardy, but they have been known to be susceptible to various genetic conditions and can be sensitive to certain drugs. In all countries except the United States, the Japanese and American strains of Akita are considered two separate breeds. In the United States, however, the two strains are considered a single breed with differences in type. For a while, the American strain of Akita was known in some countries as the Great Japanese Dog. Both forms of Akita are probably best known worldwide from the true story of Hachikō, a loyal Akita who lived in Japan before World War II.
The Alaskan Malamute () is a large breed of domestic dog (Canis lupus familiaris) originally bred for their strength and endurance to haul heavy freight as a sled dog. They are similar to other arctic, husky, and spitz breeds such as the Greenland Dog, Canadian Eskimo Dog, the Siberian Husky, and the Samoyed.
The wandering albatross, snowy albatross, white-winged albatross or goonie (Diomedea exulans) is a large seabird from the family Diomedeidae, which has a circumpolar range in the Southern Ocean. It was the last species of albatross to be described, and was long considered the same species as the Tristan albatross and the Antipodean albatross. A few authors still consider them all subspecies of the same species. The SACC has a proposal on the table to split this species, and BirdLife International has already split it. Together with the Amsterdam albatross, it forms the wandering albatross species complex. The wandering albatross is one of the two largest members of the genus Diomedea (the great albatrosses), being similar in size to the southern royal albatross. It is one of the largest, best known, and most studied species of bird in the world, with it possessing the greatest known wingspan of any living bird. This is also one of the most far ranging birds. Some individual wandering albatrosses are known to circumnavigate the Southern Ocean three times, covering more than 120,000 km (75,000 mi), in one year.
Aldabra Giant Tortoise
The Aldabra giant tortoise (Aldabrachelys gigantea), from the islands of the Aldabra Atoll in the Seychelles, is one of the largest tortoises in the world. Historically, giant tortoises were found on many of the western Indian Ocean islands, as well as Madagascar, and the fossil record indicates giant tortoises once occurred on every continent and many islands with the exception of Australia and Antarctica. Many of the Indian Ocean species were thought to be driven to extinction by over-exploitation by European sailors, and they were all seemingly extinct by 1840 with the exception of the Aldabran giant tortoise on the island atoll of Aldabra. Although some remnant individuals of A. g. hololissa and A. g. arnoldi may remain in captivity, in recent times, these have all been reduced as subspecies of A. gigantea.