Animals in Trinidad and Tobago

Updated: March 7, 2023
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Below you can find a complete list of Trinidadian animals. We currently track 184 animals in Trinidad and Tobago and are adding more every day!

The fauna in Trinidad and Tobago is unlike that found in other islands of the Caribbean. Its unique nature arose because millions of years ago the island was actually connected to South America, and the ancestors of many animals found in Venezuela came over the land bridge to what became T & T.

About 100 species of mammals, and 90 species of reptiles, including five types of marine turtles. There are 50 species of freshwater fish, 30 species of amphibians, and 950 species of marine fish that live on or in the waters around Trinidad and Tobago and its smaller islands. Some of these species are only found in Trinidad and Tobago.

The Official National Animal of Trinidad and Tobago


The national symbol of Trinidad is the scarlet ibis, and the national animal of Tobago is the cocrico.


Since Trinidad and Tobago are two islands, they have two national animals. The national symbol of Trinidad is the scarlet ibis, and the national animal of Tobago is the cocrico, also called the Rufous-tailed chachalaca. Both animals are birds.

Rarest Animals in Trinidad and Tobago

Gray Tree Frog (Hyla versicolor) on a tree with a green background

The golden tree frog is common in Trinidad and Tobago.

©Steve Byland/

Trinidad and Tobago are twin-island nations located in the southern Caribbean and are renowned for their lush rainforests, scenic beaches, and vibrant culture.

The country boasts a diverse range of flora and fauna, with many endemic species found nowhere else in the world. However, like many other countries, Trinidad and Tobago is also home to several rare and endangered species.

Here is a short list of rare species found in Trinidad and Tobago:

  • Aechmea Downsiana
  • Eriocaulon Caesium
  • Phytotriades Auratus (more commonly known as the Golden Treefrog)
  • Neurolepis Virgata
  • Pipile (commonly known as the Trinidad Piping-guan)

Largest Animals in Trinidad and Tobago

leather-back sea turtle

The leatherback sea turtle can weigh up to 2000 pounds and grow up to 7 feet in length.


Trinidad and Tobago are islands with lush rainforests, rivers, and surrounding seas that host many of the largest creatures found in the region, ranging from marine mammals to reptiles and primates.

Here, we take a closer look at some of the largest and most awe-inspiring animals that call Trinidad and Tobago home:

  • Leatherback Sea Turtle: can weigh up to 2000 pounds and grow up to 7 feet in length.
  • West Indian Manatee: can weigh up to 1500 pounds and grow up to 13 feet in length.
  • Red Howler Monkey: can weigh up to 22 pounds and grow up to 2 feet in length.
  • Spectacled Caiman: can weigh up to 110 pounds and grow up to 7 feet in length.
  • Yellow-headed Amazon Parrot: can weigh up to 1.1 pounds and grow up to 15 inches in length.

Where To Find The Top Wild Animals in Trinidad and Tobago

Pitch Lake

Pitch Lake is found in Trinidad.


The top wild fauna in T & T can be found in its moist forests dry forests, xeric scrubland, and mangrove swamps. There are also freshwater rivers and streams and dams, coral reefs, seagrass beds, and the open ocean.

The government of Trinidad and Tobago recognizes 61 protected areas around the country, and they are separated into categories that include national parks, natural landmarks, nature conservation reserves, scenic landscapes, scientific reserves, and recreation parks, all of which cover some 170,502 acres.

Among Trinidad and Tobago’s nature reserves are

  • Argyle Falls found outside Roxborough in Tobago
  • Aripo Savannas in the eastern central part of Trinidad
  • Balandra Basins on the northeast coast of Trinidad
  • Buccoo Reef, a marine park in Tobago
  • The Caroni Bird Sanctuary on the island of Caroni
  • El Socorro Centre For Wildlife Conservation in Freeport
  • Nariva Swamp on the east coast of Trinidad
  • The Tobago Main Ridge Forest Reserve
  • Yerette in St. Joseph is famous for its population of protected hummingbirds.

The Most Dangerous Animals In Trinidad and Tobago Today

Xingu River ray white-blotched river stingray or the polka-dot stingray

Xingu River ray white-blotched river stingray or the polka-dot stingray Southern stingrays are often found in the Trinidad region.

©Pavaphon Supanantananont/

  • Southern stingray – Fatal stings from this animal are very rare, and the death by the stingray of naturalist Steve Irwin must be counted as a freak occurrence. But these cartilaginous relatives of the shark do tend to bury themselves in the sand near the coast and will defend themselves if they’re stepped on. Naturalists recommend a person walking shuffle their feet a bit if they walk through the surf to warn the animal that they’re coming.
  • Great White Shark – This shark, which can be 20 feet long and weigh 2.5 tons, causes the most shark injuries and deaths around the world.
  • Venomous snakes – Venomous snakes are only found in Trinidad and the Boca Islands. Among them are the fer-de-lance, the bushmaster, and two species of coral snake.
  • Spectacled Caiman – This crocodilian is a potential threat to humans. It has also been known to take livestock and pets. However, it does try to avoid human contact in the places where it’s been hunted.

Endangered Animals In Trinidad and Tobago

Heaviest Animals: Plankton Feeding Sharks

A large Whale Shark swimming in shallow water over a tropical coral reef. Each whale shark has its own unique pattern of spots, much like human fingerprints. They are common in the Trinidad oceans.

©Richard Whitcombe/

Like nearly everywhere else on earth, Trinidad and Tobago has its share of endangered fauna, and some animals may even be extinct in their native habitat. They include:

  • Leatherback turtle – This huge marine turtle can grow as long as 7.2 feet and weigh 1540 pounds. It is unique among sea turtles in the size of its flippers, which can grow even longer than its body, and the leathery skin that covers its carapace. It hauls out on the beaches of T & T to lay its eggs. Despite being protected, leatherback turtles are listed as vulnerable or endangered due to being caught in webs meant for fish and struck by sea-going vessels. Pollution, including light pollution that disorients hatchlings, also takes a toll on this animal.
  • West Indian manatee – This marine mammal is also called the sea cow and was a relative of the now-extinct Stellar’s sea cow. The West Indian manatee is related to the elephant and spends all of its time in the water, with its dense bones helping it stay submerged. It can grow to 11.5 feet long and weigh 1320 pounds, though the heaviest recorded weight was 3649 pounds. Manatees are also unique when it comes to other mammals because of their diaphragm. It’s split in two and each side works independently. The West Indian manatee is considered vulnerable, while its subspecies are endangered.
  • Whale shark – Bigger even than the Great White and able to grow as long as 62 feet, the whale shark is harmless to humans. It is not a whale but it is a shark but is unusual among sharks that it is a filter feeder that feeds on the soup of plankton in the ocean. It simply opens its mouth and plunges right into its food, or sucks the food in, closes its mouth, and flushes the excess water out through its gills. The whale shark is endangered.
  • Horned screamer – This is a bird that gets its name from its shrieking call. Related to ducks and geese, it is so rare in Trinidad and Tobago that biologists believe it has been extirpated or made extinct in a region where it once lived. However, it is of least concern in countries of South America such as Venezuela, Brazil, and Colombia.

Trinidadian Animals

Admiral Butterfly

Stunningly beautiful wings


The agouti is one of the only animals that can crack open Brazil nut pods!

Amazon Parrot

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

American Eel

Don't eat raw eel! Their blood is poisonous to humans when consumed raw.


First evolved 100 million years ago!


Can curl into a hard, protective ball!


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.


Detects prey using echolocation!


There are 8 different species!

Bed Bugs

Bed bugs feed for 4-12 minutes.


Rock paintings of bees date back 15,000 years


There are more than 350,000 different species


Not all birds are able to fly!

Biscuit Beetle

The biscuit beetle form a symbiotic relationship with yeast

Black Widow Spider

They typically prey on insects!

Blue Tanager (Blue-Grey Tanager)

They travel and forage in pairs or groups

Blue Tang

One of the most colorful members of the genus Acanthurus


Seabirds found across the South Pacific!

Brazilian Treehopper

“Mild-Mannered Minimonsters”

Brown Dog Tick

Can live its entire life indoors

Burrowing Owl

The burrowing owl lives in underground burrows

Bushmaster Snake

The bushmaster’s scientific name means “silent death.”


There are thought to be up 17,500 species!


Some species' babies use their hooked or scraper-like teeth to peel off and eat their mother's skin

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.


May have been domesticated up to 10,000 years ago.


The larvae of a moth or butterfly!


There are nearly 3,000 different species!


There are about 3,000 documented species!


First domesticated more than 10,000 years ago!


Dated to be around 300 million years old!

Codling Moth

Pupae are able to undergo diapause to survive poor fruit yield years and winter.

Collared Peccary

Form bands of up to 12 individuals!

Common Furniture Beetle

The common furniture beetle feeds exclusively on wood

Common House Spider

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


They can fly 35 mph and dive 150 feet below water.


There are nearly 1.5 billion worldwide!


There are 93 different crab groups

Crab Spider

Crab Spiders can mimic ants or bird droppings


Male crickets can produce sounds by rubbing their wings together


Have changed little in 200 million years!


Crocodylomorphs include extinct ancient species as well as 26 living species today.


First domesticated in South-East Asia!

Dog Tick

Dog ticks feed on dogs and other mammals


First domesticated 5,000 years ago!


It's larvae are carnivorous!

Dubia Cockroach

The most popular species of feeder roach


Rows of tiny plates line their teeth!

Dung Beetle

The dung beetle can push objects many times its own weight


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


There are nearly 2,000 different species!


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


The firefly produces some of the most efficient light in the world


Sleeps on just one leg!


Adult fleas can jump up to 7 inches in the air


There are more than 240,000 different species!

Flying Squirrel

Can glide up to 90 meters!


There are around 7,000 different species!

Fruit Fly

Fruit flies are among the most common research animals in the world

Fulvous Whistling Duck

They build a ramp from their nest, which leads to a nearby water source


Can grow to more than 3m long!


There are thought to be over 2,000 species!


Found inhabiting dense woodland and caves!


Males form large mating swarms at dusk


There are 11,000 known species!


Also known as the Millionfish!


Able to run as quickly backwards as forwards!

Harpy Eagle

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

Harris’s Hawk

Their vision is eight times better than a human's

Hawk Moth Caterpillar

Many hawk moth caterpillars eat toxins from plants, but don’t sequester them the way milkweed butterflies do. Most toxins are excreted.

Hepatic Tanager (Red Tanager)

Parents and their young sing sweetly to each other

Hercules Beetle

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

Herring Gull

They are loud, spirited birds with raucous cries that sound like bursts of laughter.

Honey Bee

There are only 8 recognized species!


Has evolved over 50 million years!


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


The fly has no teeth

Howler Monkey

Spends 80% of it's time resting!


Thought to have orignated 200,000 years ago!


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.


Found in swamps, marshes and wetlands!


Uses visual signals to communicate!


There are an estimated 30 million species!


The jacana has the ability to swim underwater

Jack Crevalle

One of the biggest species in the Caranx genus


The largest feline on the American continent!

Jumping Spider

Some can jump 50 times the length of their bodies

Keel-Billed Toucan

It's beak can reach nearly 20 cm long!


Inhabits wetlands and woodlands worldwide!


There are more than 5,000 species worldwide!


Has 10 pairs of eyes!


There are around 5,000 different species!

Lone Star Tick

Only females have the ‘lone star’ marking


The largest species of parrot in the world!


Will only live in wet areas

Marine Toad

Produces a toxin used in arrow darts!


There are 2,500 known species worldwide!


They have a symbiotic relationship with ants.


Some species have a poisonous bite!


Mockingbirds are incredible mimics that can learn hundreds of songs!


Known for their calm and peaceful nature!


Has characteristics of two or more breeds!


There are around 260 known species!


Feeds on aquatic insects and water-spiders!

Morpho Butterfly

Collectors prize them for their bright wings


There are 250,000 different species!

Mountain Lion

Has no real natural predators!


Found on every continent on Earth!


The offspring of a horse and donkey parents!


Also known as the Painted Leopard!

Orb Weaver

Females are about four times the size of males


They reuse nesting sites for 70 years!


There are 13 different species worldwide


The owl can rotate its head some 270 degrees


Prefers to hunt at night than during the day!


Can live for up to 100 years!


Females lay between 8 and 12 eggs per clutch!

Pipe Snake

Some of these snakes flatten their neck and raise their heads to imitate cobras if they’re threatened.

Pit Viper

Pit vipers's fangs fold up into their mouths when they don't need them.

Poison Dart Frog

Inhabits the jungles of Central and South America!

Pompano Fish

They are bottom-feeders


There are 30 different species worldwide!

Praying Mantis

The mantis can turn its head 180 degrees.


Has longer back legs than front legs!


Inhabits woodland and forest areas worldwide!


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


Omnivores that eat anything!

Rat Snakes

Rat snakes are constrictors from the Colubridae family of snakes.


Rattlesnakes may have evolved their rattle to warn bison away from them.

Red-Footed Tortoise

Male and female Red-Footed Tortoises move their heads to communicate.

River Turtle

Inhabits freshwater habitats around the world!


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.


Will mate with the entire flock!

Roseate Spoonbill

The only Spoonbill in the western hemisphere!

Saber-Toothed Tiger

Canines up to 7 inches long!

Sable Ferret

Ferrets were used during the Revolutionary War to keep down the rat population.


There are more than 700 different species!

Sand Crab

The sand crab burrows beneath the sand with its tail


There are around 2,000 known species!

Sea Eagle

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


Males give birth to up to 1,000 offspring!

Short-Eared Owl

The short-eared owl is one of the most widespread owl species in the world, covering five continents.


There are 2,000 different species worldwide!


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


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

Smokybrown Cockroach

Has up to 45 eggs per egg case


There are nearly 1,000 different species!


There are around 4,000 known species worldwide


There are 140 different species!


Small rodents found in woodlands worldwide!

Stick Insect

There are more than 3,000 different species!

Summer Tanager

They remove bee stingers by rubbing them against a tree


Populations have been affected by pollution!

Tarantula Hawk

Tarantula hawks are excellent pollinators, especially for milkweed.


Their mounds can be up to 9 meters tall!

Tiger Beetle

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


Can live until they are more than 150 years old!


There are more than 40 different species!

Tree Cricket

They make music with their wings

Tree Frog

Found in warmer jungles and forests!

Tufted Coquette

They are tame and easy to approach


Closely related to pheasants and chickens!


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


Migrates up and down the mountains!

Upland Sandpiper

They make jerky movements as they walk through the grass, searching for food.

Vampire Bat

Have a heat sensor on the end of their nose!


Vinegaroons can spray 19 times before the glands are depleted


There are 30 different species worldwide!


There are around 75,000 recognised species!

Wattled Jacana

They are typically noisy birds but take on a soft tone with their young.

White-Faced Capuchin

One of the world's most intelligent monkeys!

White Ferret / Albino Ferrets

There are two different types of white ferrets!

Wolf Spider

Carnivorous arachnid that hunts its prey.


This animal can roll up into a ball


There are 200 different species!


Doesn’t have eyes.

Trinidadian Animals List

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About the Author

Rebecca is an experienced Professional Freelancer with nearly a decade of expertise in writing SEO Content, Digital Illustrations, and Graphic Design. When not engrossed in her creative endeavors, Rebecca dedicates her time to cycling and filming her nature adventures. When not focused on her passion for creating and crafting optimized materials, she harbors a deep fascination and love for cats, jumping spiders, and pet rats.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

What kind of animals live in Trinidad and Tobago?

T & T is extraordinarily rich in all kinds of wildlife, including mammals, birds, fish, reptiles, amphibians, and insects.

What is the most dangerous animal in Trinidad?

The most dangerous animal in Trinidad is probably the fer-de-lance snake. This is a dangerous pit viper with a wide, flat head and beautiful brown, gray or yellow coloration on its body. It is bad-tempered and unpredictable, and a snake that looks like it’s moving away may double back and attack. This is one reason why it’s the cause of most snakebites in places where it lives with other venomous snakes.

Are there wild monkeys in Trinidad?

Wild monkeys in Trinidad are the tufted capuchin, the weeper capuchin, and the Guyanese red howler monkeys.

Are there alligators in Trinidad?

There are no alligators in Trinidad and Tobago, but there is a caiman. It is closely related to alligators, and both animals belong to the family Alligatoridae.

Are there jaguars in Trinidad and Tobago?

Trinidad and Tobago lack jaguars, but it does have its smaller cousin the ocelot. This is a medium-sized wild cat with beautiful striped and spotted fur that reminds people of a jaguar’s. If a person wants to see a jaguar, they’ll need to go to the central plains of Venezuela.