Animals in Chile

Updated: January 6, 2023
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Below you can find a complete list of Chilean animals. We currently track 221 animals in Chile and are adding more every day!

No other country in the world has such a narrow landmass as Chile. This South American nation extends 2,653 miles north to the south and yet only 110 miles east to west. The western part of the country is situated against the Pacific Ocean, while the eastern part near Argentina runs along the entire length of the Andes Mountains, forming the third-largest land border in the world. The country also shares a border with Peru and Bolivia to the north.

Due to its extreme north-to-south orientation, Chile contains a wide array of different ecosystems, including deserts, mountains, forests, grasslands, and glaciers. The north and central regions of the country between the mountains and the coast tend toward a temperate climate. Only the very south of the country has a cold and humid climate.

The Official National (State) Animal of Chile

The South Andean deer (also known as the huemul) is the national animal of Chile.

National Bird of Chile

The national bird of Chile is the Andean condor which represents power and health. The Andean condor is a large bird with a wingspan of more than 10 feet so it is no wonder that it garners a great deal of respect in the country and is proudly displayed on Chile’s coat of arms.

Where to Find the Top Wild Animals in Chile

Since its independence, Chile has established 43 national parks and numerous other wildlife reserves where people can view the wildlife in their natural habitat. The most popular natural destination in the country is probably the Torres del Paine National Park. Located in southern Chile Patagonia, it is a pristine landscape of mountains, glaciers, and forests where visitors can find cougars, deer, foxes, rheas, eagles, flamingos, owls, and many other birds.

The Bernardo O’Higgins National Park, also located in the southern ice fields and glaciers, is the largest protected area in the country. Visitors might be able to find condors, otters, cormorants, and huemuls here.

Vicente Perez Rosales National Park is located in the Los Lagos Region of south-central Chile. Situated against the Andes, the park contains exquisite mountain and volcanic vistas where visitors can find cougars, foxes, otters, the kodkod (a type of feline), the colocolo opossum (a native marsupial species), and many types of birds.

Both the Volcan Isluga National Park and Lauca National Park, located in the north of the Andean dry puna range, features snow-capped volcanoes and two large lakes. Llamas, alpacas, guanacos, cougars, tarucas, and more than 140 species of birds all roam the park.

The Queulat National Park, located in the Aysen region, features waterfalls and glaciers nestled among the mountains. The pudu, kodkod, otters, herons, kingfishers, egrets, and many other animals can be found here.

The Most Dangerous Animals in the Chile Today

Chile has very few dangerous animals within its borders. There are no poisonous snakes, and the only large cat, the cougar, has no real history of attacking people. So the most dangerous animals in the country are the venomous spiders.

  • Chilean Recluse Spider – This large fleshy brown spider is also known as the corner spider or brown spider. Symptoms its venom can range from mild irritation and pain to skin ulcers and necrosis, which can sometimes leave behind deep scars. Death only occurs in a small number of very serious cases. Fortunately, this spider does not usually bite unless it’s directly threatened.
  • Black Widow Spider – The venom from these black and white long-legged spiders can cause severe pain, muscle spasms, an abnormal heart rhythm, and abdominal cramps. These symptoms can last a few days or several weeks, depending on their severity. Black windows are not particularly aggressive, however, and the venom is rarely life-threatening.

Endangered Animals in the Chile

While Chile does make an effort to protect some of its most unique wildlife, several species are now being endangered largely from habitat loss and hunting.

  • South Andean Deer – The national animal of Chile is also in danger of becoming extinct as a result of a dramatic fall in suitable habitat.
  • Chinchilla – Both the short-tailed and long-tailed chinchilla (a furry, big-eared rodent) have historically been hunted for their luxurious coats.
  • Darwin’s Fox – Named after the famous British naturalist Charles Darwin, who collected some specimens in 1834, this is a member of the South American fox genus. Forest fragmentation and diseases appear to pose the greatest danger to their existence.
  • Andean Mountain Cat – This small feline resides in the higher elevations of the Andean Mountains. It is currently threatened by habitat loss, hunting, diseases, fall in prey numbers, and even hybridization with closely related species.
  • Marine Otter – The marine otter, which occupies the western coast of South America, was extensively hunted for its fur and its competition with fisheries. The closely related southern river otter (which, despite its name, can live in either freshwater or saltwater) is another endangered species.
  • Pacific Degu – The degu is a small rodent that lives among large groups in burrows. This species specifically resides on the small Mocha Island right off the coast of Chile. It is currently in danger of becoming extinct from habitat loss.
  • Andean Condor – These regal scavengers are, by some metrics, the largest birds in the world with a wingspan of around 11 feet. It is currently in danger of becoming extinct from habitat loss, poisoning, and hunting based on the perception that it attacks livestock.

Spectacular Fish Found in Chile

Fishing has historically been very important to Chile in large part due to its location along the Pacific Ocean. Read about the spectacular fish you can find in Chile from the plentiful Chilean jack mackerel and Peruvian anchoveta to the Easter Island Butterflyfish and more.

Chilean Animals


The largest wingspan of any bird in the world!


They can spit up to 10 feet.

Amazon Parrot

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


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

Asian Lady Beetle

Asian lady beetles infest indoor spaces, but they do not reproduce indoors.


Has a curved, upturned beak!


There are over 1768 known species!

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 Dragon Sea Slug

They inflict a painful, venomous sting


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


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.

Carpenter Ant

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


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!

Chilean Rose Tarantula

They can cling to the side of an aquarium.


Shared traits from several dinosaur groups


Natively found in the Andes Mountain range!


There are more than 2 000 known species!


Dated to be around 300 million years old!

Codling Moth

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

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!


A group of these birds is called a Murder.

Darwin’s fox

It’s not a “true fox.”

Darwin’s Frog

Camouflages itself as a dead leaf!


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


Has exceptional eyesight!


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!

Elegant Tern

Have a lifespan of 20 years or more


The fastest creatures on the planet!

Fallow deer

The fallow deer has more variation in its coat colors than most other deer.

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.


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


There are thought to be over 2,000 species!

German Cockroach

The most common type of urban roach


Found inhabiting dense woodland and caves!


Males form large mating swarms at dusk


There are 11,000 known species!

Guinea Pig

Natively found in the Andes Mountain range!


Also known as the Millionfish!

Gypsy Moth

One of the most invasive species in the world


Able to run as quickly backwards as forwards!


Can reach speeds of over 50 mph!

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.

Hercules Beetle

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


Inhabits wetlands around the world!

Honey Bee

There are only 8 recognized species!

Argentine Horned Frog

Natively found in South America!


Has evolved over 50 million years!


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.


The fly has no teeth


Thought to have orignated 200,000 years ago!

Humboldt Penguin

Found on the South American coast!


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

Jumping Spider

Some can jump 50 times the length of their bodies


Inhabits wetlands and woodlands worldwide!


The kodkod is among the smallest species of cats in the entire world


There are more than 5,000 species worldwide!


Has 10 pairs of eyes!


Leedsichthys is one of the largest fish ever discovered

Lipstick Albino Boa

Lipstick albino boas are a designer morph that you'll only find from breeders.


The Livyatan had 1 to 1.2 foot long, interlocking teeth


There are around 5,000 different species!


Natively found in the Andes Mountain range!


Each locust can eat its weight in plants each day.

Lone Star Tick

Only females have the ‘lone star’ marking


The largest species of parrot in the world!

Magellanic Penguin

Threatened by oil spills!


Will only live in wet areas


With an appropriate tail wind, the mallard can travel hundreds of miles a day


There are 2,500 known species worldwide!


They have a symbiotic relationship with ants.


Megatherium probably used its lips more than its tongue when feeling for choice leaves in the treetops.

Mexican Free-Tailed Bat

Some colonies have millions of bats


Some species have a poisonous bite!


Mockingbirds are incredible mimics that can learn hundreds of songs!


Primarily hunts and feeds on Earthworms!


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!


Only the female mosquito actually sucks blood


There are 250,000 different species!

Mountain Lion

Has no real natural predators!


Found on every continent on Earth!

Mouse Spider

The female mouse spider is rarely seen because they don't leave their burrows.


The offspring of a horse and donkey parents!

No See Ums

There are more than 5,000 species.

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!


Parrotlets aren't the world's tiniest parrot — that would be the pygmy parrot of Australasia.

Peregrine Falcon

Fastest animal on Earth


Females lay between 8 and 12 eggs per clutch!


It's a genus of terror birds


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

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!


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!


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.


Male rheas mate with up to a dozen females and single-handedly raise up to 80 chicks at once!

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!

Ruddy Duck

Ruddy duck breeding males have bright blue bills!

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!


Males give birth to up to 1,000 offspring!


Around 35 million in the English countryside!

Short-Eared Owl

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


The spinal column of the shrew Scutisorex somereni is so strong and reinforced that it can support the weight of an adult human.


There are 2,000 different species worldwide!

Silver Dollar

Closely related to the Piranha

Skink Lizard

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


Also known as the Polecat!


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!

Spectacled Bear

Native to the Andes mountains of South America!

Spider Wasp

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


Small rodents found in woodlands worldwide!

Stick Insect

There are more than 3,000 different species!


Stromatolites played a key role in the development of life on Earth.

Summer Tanager

They remove bee stingers by rubbing them against a tree


Populations have been affected by pollution!


Most closely related to horses and rhinos!

Tarantula Hawk

Tarantula hawks are excellent pollinators, especially for milkweed.


Their mounds can be up to 9 meters tall!


Some theropods had feathers and may have been ancestors of modern birds.


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


They inject hosts with a chemical that stops them from feeling the pain of the bite

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 Frog

Found in warmer jungles and forests!


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


Migrates up and down the mountains!

Vampire Bat

Have a heat sensor on the end of their nose!

Vermilion Flycatcher

They have a fast song that lasts up to 10 syllables at max.


Vicuñas have some of the softest wool in the entire animal kingdom


Vinegaroons can spray 19 times before the glands are depleted


There are 30 different species worldwide!


Warblers are so called because of the trills of their song.


There are around 75,000 recognised species!

Whiptail Lizard

Many whiptail species reproduce asexually.

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

Woodlouse Spider

Unlike most spiders, woodlouse spiders don’t build a web.


There are 200 different species!


Doesn’t have eyes.

Chilean Animals List

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About the Author

AZ Animals is a growing team of animals experts, researchers, farmers, conservationists, writers, editors, and -- of course -- pet owners who have come together to help you better understand the animal kingdom and how we interact.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

What animals live in Chile?

Chile has about 150 species of mammals, most of which are rodents, bats, deer, and carnivores (like foxes and weasels), while whales and dolphins can be seen off the coast. There are also more than 500 species of birds, a hundred reptiles and amphibians, and many species of insects.

What animal is Chile known for?

Chile is particularly well-known for the unique flightless rhea, the cougar, the Andean condor, flamingoes, penguins, chinchillas, and llamas. Many unique species of deer also roam the countryside, including the Andean huemul and the pudu (the smallest species of deer in the world).

What is the most dangerous animal in Chile?

The most dangerous animal might be the Chilean recluse spider due to its toxic venom. Cougars are obviously capable of killing a person, but actual attacks are exceptionally rare.