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Animals of Amazon rain forest & jungle

Rain forest animal, jaguarThe largest mammal found in the rainforest is the Amazon tapir. This non-aggressive animal eats plants and can weigh up to 300kg. The cat family is represented by the mighty jaguar, the versatile puma and the smaller ocelot. All of them are rarely seen now and endangered due to hunting and habitat destruction. Primates are made up by the New World monkeys, all of them tree dwellers and excellent climbers using a strong prehensile tail. There are 19 species of primates, among them the woolly monkey and the spider monkey, two of the more larger ones, capuchins and squirrel monkey.

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Ecuador's rainforest contains around one-third of total diversity, making it one of the most rich of the planet.

Another important group are the edentates, to which the armadillo and anteater belong. Amphibians are also well represented with tree frogs, including the colorful poison-arrow frogs, so called because the indigenous used and still use their toxins on the tip of their arrows. Reptiles are numerous with many snakes inhabiting the forests.

The mighty anaconda is the queen among them, growing to several meters and are found near rivers and lagoons. Crocodiles are represented by the caimans. Another area which is very rich in species are the waters of the rainforest, where you find more species of fish like in a comparable area of the open oceans. Pirañas, stingrays, huge catfish and electric eels are among the more interesting ones.

 

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