Animals in Cuba



Below you can find a complete list of Cuban animals. We currently track 146 animals in Cuba and are adding more every day!

Cuba is an island country in the northern Caribbean with a subtropical climate. It has six major ecoregions, including moist forests, dry forests, pine forests, wetlands, cactus scrub, and mangrove forests. Cuba is thus full of wildlife. It has more species of animals than any other spot in the Caribbean with about 17,800 unique species.

What is the State Animal of Cuba

The national or state animal of Cuba is the Cuban hutia. Also known as the Desmarest’s hutia, the Cuban hutia is an omnivorous rodent that can weigh up to 19 pounds. It’s the largest living member of the hutia species. It lives in a wide range of habitats, which allows it to be quite widespread in Cuba’s diverse ecoregions.

The other state animal of Cuba is the national bird called the Cuban trogon or tocororo. The trogon lives in both dry and moist forests. It’s a very colorful bird with colors of red, purple, blue, green, and white on its body. It grows to about 10 or 11 inches from beak to tail.

Where To Find The Top Wildlife in Cuba

Some of the top wild animals in Cuba include the hawksbill turtle, the Antillean manatee, the tiny bee hummingbird, the Cuban parakeet, the French angelfish, and the Cuban crocodile. Hawksbills are found throughout Cuban tropical waters, but they specifically go to Cayo Largo to lay eggs between April and September. The Antillean manatee is also found throughout Cuban waters and can be seen while snorkeling.

Endemic bird species such as the ones mentioned above can be found throughout Cuba, but a good place to see many of them is a rural area south of Najasa town. There are plenty of good snorkeling spots in Cuba such as Playa Pesquero. There, you can see many endemic fish species like the French angelfish. Zapata National Park is a major wetland area that houses the Cuban crocodile and many other species.

The Most Dangerous Animals In Cuba Today

In general, there aren’t any truly dangerous wild animals in Cuba. The dangerous animals in Cuba are simply capable of delivering uncomfortable bites and stings. This includes Medusa jellyfish, mosquitos, scorpions, spiders, and lizards. Sharks can be found in Cuba’s waters, but they’re mostly active at night, and there are no records of shark attacks on Cuban beaches. As previously mentioned, the Cuban crocodile is only found in one area, and the area is tightly controlled with fences and the like.

Famous Animals In Cuba

Cuba’s natural biodiversity means that there are a lot of endemic animals in Cuba. These are animals that can only be found in Cuba, which makes them locally famous. The list includes the following:

Cuba is also very proud of its famous native dog the Havanese. The Havanese is very popular all over the world for its sturdy build, affectionate and playful personality, and cute small size.

Strange Animals In Cuba

Cuba can claim a number of strange wild animals as well. Top of the list is the Cuban solenodon. This is an endangered animal described as a living fossil. It looks like a shrew, and it has venomous saliva that it injects into its prey with its teeth. The strange shrew was last spotted in 2003, however, recent research suggests that there’s evidence that the animal still exists in Cuba.

Another strange animal species in Cuba is the Monte Iberia dwarf eleuth frog. It’s the third smallest of all frogs and is only found in two small parts of eastern Cuba. It’s considered critically endangered due to a loss of habitat. This frog is about the size of a fingernail.

Mammals In Cuba

Cuba doesn’t have a lot of large mammals or a lot of predators that are mammals. Many of the top animal species in Cuba are birds, reptiles, or fish. Some of the most well-known mammals in Cuba include the manatee, the Cuban hutia, the butterfly bat, the Indian mongoose, and the primitive Cuban solenodon. The Indian mongoose is not actually native to Cuba, but an invasive species. It was introduced to the island to cut down rat populations. However, it has almost no natural predators, so its numbers have gotten somewhat out of control.

Endangered Animals In Cuba

There are a number of endangered animals in Cuba. Common threats to Cuban animals include invasive species, hunting from humans, and loss of habitat from human expansion. Some notable endangered animals species in Cuba include:

  • Bahama swallow
  • Baracoa dwarf frog
  • Cuban solenodon
  • Bee hummingbird
  • Cuban crocodile
  • Cuban kite
  • Cuban parrot

Zoos in Cuba

Cuba has a number of zoos and aquariums, including the National Zoo of Cuba located in Havana. Other zoos and aquariums include the following:

Cuban Animals

Amazon Parrot

These parrots can be trained to be "talking birds" that mimic human speech

Ant

First evolved 100 million years ago!

Armadillo

Can curl into a hard, protective ball!

Armyworm

They are so named because they "march" in armies of worms from one crop to another in search of food

Barn Owl

Found everywhere around the world!

Barn Swallow

Older offspring help care for new hatchlings.

Bat

Detects prey using echolocation!

Bear

There are 8 different species!

Beetle

There are more than 350,000 different species

Bird

Not all birds are able to fly!

Black Widow Spider

They typically prey on insects!

Booby

Seabirds found across the South Pacific!

Burrowing Owl

The burrowing owl lives in underground burrows

Butterfly

There are thought to be up 20,000 species!

Caiman

Can grow to up 6 meters long!

Camel Cricket

The camel crickets that are found in the USA are light brown in color. They also have dark streaks all over their body.

Carpenter Ant

Carpenter ants can lift up to seven times their own weight with their teeth!

Cat

First domesticated by the Ancient Egyptians!

Caterpillar

The larvae of a moth or butterfly!

Catfish

There are nearly 3,000 different species!

Centipede

There are about 3,000 documented species!

Chicken

First domesticated more than 10,000 years ago!

Cockroach

Dated to be around 300 million years old!

Collared Peccary

Form bands of up to 12 individuals!

Common House Spider

House spiders have the ability to eat most insects in a home.

Cow

There are nearly 1.5 million worldwide!

Crab

There are 93 different crab groups

Crab Spider

Crab Spiders can mimic ants or bird droppings

Crocodile

Have changed little in 200 million years!

Dog

First domesticated in South-East Asia!

Donkey

First domesticated 5,000 years ago!

Dragonfly

It's larvae are carnivorous!

Duck

Rows of tiny plates line their teeth!

Dung Beetle

The dung beetle can push objects many times its own weight

Earthworm

They are hermaphrodites, which means they have male and female organs

Earwig

There are nearly 2,000 different species!

Eel

Eels can be a mere few inches long to 13 feet!

Falcon

The fastest creatures on the planet!

False Widow Spider

False spiders actually prey on black widow spiders and other hazardous spiders

Fiddler Crab

The fiddler crab gets its name from the motion the males make with their over-sized claw during the mating ritual.

Flamingo

Sleeps on just one leg!

Fly

There are more than 240,000 different species!

Flying Squirrel

Can glide up to 90 meters!

Frog

There are around 7,000 different species!

Gar

Can grow to more than 3m long!

Gecko

There are thought to be over 2,000 species!

Glow Worm

Found inhabiting dense woodland and caves!

Grasshopper

There are 11,000 known species!

Great Blue Heron

Their wingspan is larger than an eagle’s; both males and females help hatch the eggs; rich in symbolism

Guppy

Also known as the Millionfish!

Hamster

Able to run as quickly backwards as forwards!

Hare

Can reach speeds of over 40 mph!

Harpy Eagle

Talon's the size of a grizzly bear's claws!

Havanese

These are the only dogs that are native to Cuba

Hercules Beetle

This dynastine scarab beetle makes a weird huffing sound when it’s disturbed.

Heron

Inhabits wetlands around the world!

Honey Bee

There are only 8 recognized species!

Horse

Has evolved over 50 million years!

Horsefly

Horseflies have been seen performing Immelmann turns, much like fighter jets.

House wren

The wren’s epithet, aedon, comes from a Greek queen who accidentally killed her only son. She was actually aiming for her nephew, and Zeus took pity on her and turned her into a nightingale.

Human

Thought to have orignated 200,000 years ago!

Hummingbird

Beat their wings up to 80 times per second!

Huntsman Spider

Some huntsman spiders have an interesting way of moving around. Some cartwheel while others do handsprings or backflips.

Ibis

Found in swamps, marshes and wetlands!

Iguana

Uses visual signals to communicate!

Insects

There are an estimated 30 million species!

Ivory-billed woodpecker

The ivory-billed woodpecker can drill into wood with its sharp beak

Kingfisher

Inhabits wetlands and woodlands worldwide!

Ladybug

There are more than 5,000 species worldwide!

Lizard

There are around 5,000 different species!

Locust

Each locust can eat its weight in plants each day.

Macaw

The largest species of parrot in the world!

Marine Toad

Produces a toxin used in arrow darts!

Mayfly

There are 2,500 known species worldwide!

Mealybug

They have a symbiotic relationship with ants.

Mexican Free-Tailed Bat

Some colonies have millions of bats

Millipede

Some species have a poisonous bite!

Mole

Primarily hunts and feeds on Earthworms!

Mole Cricket

Adult Mole crickets may fly as far as 5 miles during mating season and are active most of the year.

Molly

Known for their calm and peaceful nature!

Monarch Butterfly

During migration, Monarch Butterflies may travel 250 or more miles each day.

Mongrel

Has characteristics of two or more breeds!

Monkey

There are around 260 known species!

Monte Iberia Eleuth

The smallest frog in the Northern Hemisphere!

Moorhen

Feeds on aquatic insects and water-spiders!

Moth

There are 250,000 different species!

Mountain Lion

Has no real natural predators!

Mouse

Found on every continent on Earth!

Mule

The offspring of a horse and donkey parents!

No See Ums

There are more than 5,000 species.

Ocelot

Also known as the Painted Leopard!

Orb Weaver

Females are about four times the size of males

Otter

There are 13 different species worldwide

Panther

Prefers to hunt at night than during the day!

Parrot

Can live for up to 100 years!

Peregrine Falcon

Fastest animal on Earth

Pheasant

Females lay between 8 and 12 eggs per clutch!

Pigeon

They can find their way back to their nests from up to 1300 miles away.

Poison Dart Frog

Inhabits the jungles of Central and South America!

Porcupine

There are 30 different species worldwide!

Puma

Has longer back legs than front legs!

Quail

Inhabits woodland and forest areas worldwide!

Quetzal

The tail feathers of the male can be 1m long!

Rat

Omnivores that eat anything!

Rattlesnake

It's venom digests it's prey before it even swallows it!

Red-winged blackbird

The male red-winged blackbird can sing to attract mates

River Turtle

Inhabits freshwater habitats around the world!

Rodents

The capybara, the world’s largest rodent, likes to be in and around bodies of water. Because of this, the Catholic Church in South America decided that it was a fish, and people were allowed to eat it during Lent and First Fridays.

Roseate Spoonbill

The only Spoonbill in the western hemisphere!

Ruby-Throated Hummingbird

Ruby-throated hummingbirds can beat their wings more than 50 times per second.

Saber-Toothed Tiger

Canines up to 7 inches long!

Salamander

There are more than 700 different species!

Scorpion

There are around 2,000 known species!

Sea Eagle

The sea eagle tends to mate for life with a single partner

Seahorse

Males give birth to up to 1,000 offspring!

Sheep

Around 35 million in the English countryside!

Shrimp

There are 2,000 different species worldwide!

Skink Lizard

Some skinks lay eggs in some habitats while giving birth to skinklets in other habitats.

Sloth

It's body temperature is between 30 - 34 degrees!

Slug

They glide around on one foot, which is aided by the slime they produce

Snail

There are nearly 1,000 different species!

Snake

There are around 3,000 known species worldwide

Snapping Turtle

Only found in North America!

Sparrow

There are 140 different species!

Spider Wasp

They prey on spiders to feed their larvae or they parasitize other spider wasps.

Squirrel

Small rodents found in woodlands worldwide!

Stick Insect

There are more than 3,000 different species!

Swan

Populations have been affected by pollution!

Tarantula Hawk

Tarantula hawks are excellent pollinators, especially for milkweed.

Termite

Their mounds can be up to 9 meters tall!

Thrush

The American robin is called the robin because its red breast reminded European settlers of the robin back in the old country.

Tiger Beetle

The adult tiger beetle is one of the fastest land insects in the world

Tortoise

Can live until they are more than 150 years old!

Toucan

There are more than 40 different species!

Tree Frog

Found in warmer jungles and forests!

Turkey

Closely related to pheasants and chickens!

Turtles

Some species of aquatic turtles can get up to 70 percent of their oxygen through their butt.

Umbrellabird

Migrates up and down the mountains!

Vampire Bat

Have a heat sensor on the end of their nose!

Vinegaroon

Vinegaroons can spray 19 times before the glands are depleted

Vulture

There are 30 different species worldwide!

Wasp

There are around 75,000 recognised species!

White-Faced Capuchin

One of the world's most intelligent monkeys!

Wolf Spider

Carnivorous arachnid that hunts its prey.

Woodlouse

This animal can roll up into a ball

Woodpecker

There are 200 different species!

Cuban Animals List

Animals in Cuba FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

What animals live in Cuba?

Cuba is home to over 17,000 species of animals, including the Cuban hutia, the bee hummingbird, the Cuban land crab, the Cuban ground iguana, and the Cuban crocodile.

What is the most dangerous animal in Cuba?

Cuba has no truly dangerous animals, but Medusa jellyfish, crocodiles, and sharks are some to look out for.

What is the state animal of Cuba?

Cuba has two state animals in the Cuban hutia and the Cuban tocororo bird.

Are there monkeys in Cuba?

Cuba also used to be home to native monkey species, but there are no longer any native monkey species in Cuba.

Does Cuba have sloths?

Cuba was once home to giant ground sloths, but it no longer has any sloth species.