Below you can find a complete list of Colombian animals. We currently track 141 animals in Colombia and are adding more every day!
The country of Colombia in South America is bordered by two bodies of water and has mountains, grasslands, and rainforests. So, it should be no surprise that it’s home to 10 percent of the world’s animal species. Well-known members of the wildlife community include jaguars, caimans, giant anteaters, and the spectacled bear just to name a few. In terms of numbers, there are 467 species of mammal, 518 species of reptiles, and 3200 species of fish in Colombia.
The Official National Animal of Colombia
The national animal of Colombia is the Andean condor. Take one look at the Andean condor and it’s not hard to believe that it’s one of the biggest birds of prey on the earth. It can weigh up to 25 pounds with a wingspan of 10 feet!
The Andean condor was chosen as the national bird of Colombia in 1834. The choice was partly due to the folklore attached to this unique bird. The Andean condor symbolizes health, power, and freedom. It has a long history and is even pictured in Andean art going back to 2500 BC.
Unfortunately, Andean condors have a conservation status of Vulnerable. Many die after eating animals with pesticides in their system. Furthermore, local farmers sometimes shoot these birds thinking they are killing their livestock. Andean condors do eat cows, sheep, and deer, but they eat animals after they have been killed by another predator.
Conservation actions are being taken by the Colombian government to keep this bird from going extinct. Their actions include the introduction of laws decreasing the use of pesticides. Also, there are captive breeding programs to increase the population.
Where to Find the Top Wild Animals in Colombia
Colombia has unique animals living in each of its diverse habitats. Discover more facts about a few of the most notable wild animals in Colombia.
- Jaguar – Some jaguars live in tropical rainforests around the Amazon basin. Others live on the savannas and grasslands of Colombia.
- Giant Anteater – This unique animal lives mostly in the northwestern part of Colombia. Its habitats include dry and tropical forests, savannas, and the open plains.
- Spectacled Bear – The spectacled bear is sometimes called the Andean bear. That stands to reason because this bear lives in the Andean jungle.
- Capybara – This member of Colombian wildlife lives on the open plains in the eastern region of the country.
- Pink River Dolphin – This unique dolphin lives in the Amazon and Orinoco River basins in Colombia.
- Cotton-top Tamarin – Unless you visit a zoo, you can only find these unique monkeys in Colombia. They live in forests located in the northwestern region of this South American country.
The Most Dangerous Animals in Colombia Today
Like most countries, Colombia has its share of dangerous wildlife. Check out the most dangerous animals in Colombia:
- Poison Dart Frog – Their small size and colorful skin can seem harmless at first glance. But don’t be fooled! This frog’s skin is coated with a layer of poison. In fact, this frog has enough poison on its skin to kill 20 humans. The poison causes nerve damage and involuntary muscle contraction which can stop the heart. This is certainly an effective weapon against its predators.
- Chocoan Forest Pit Viper – These venomous snakes live in the Chocoan rainforests as well as in the Andes mountains. Out of all the reported snake bites in Colombia, viper bites account for 90-95% of them. These snakes stay well-hidden by lying on branches without moving for hours. Plus, they hide in bushes and plants until nightfall. One bite from a Chocoan Forest pit viper can cripple a human or even cause death. There’s antivenin medication available, but it has to be the appropriate type in order to be effective.
- Black Caiman Crocodile – These crocodiles can grow to be 20 feet long and are the most common crocodile in the country. Their combined power and speed makes them an easy choice for the list of the most dangerous animals in Colombia. Their jaws are strong enough to crush the shell of a turtle! So, a human wouldn’t have a chance against this reptile. Their black scales help them to blend in with their watery habitat making them difficult to spot.
- Bullet Ant – These ants live in bushes, tall grass and on the forest floor. People who have been stung by this ant say it feels similar to being shot with a gun. That’s one powerful sting! The ant’s sting contains a poison that causes temporary paralysis as well as pain in the spot where the person was stung. The poison is not deadly, but the pain can last anywhere from 5 to 24 hours.
Endangered Animals in Colombia
Unfortunately, there are several endangered animals in Colombia. Loss of habitat, poaching and poisoning of food sources are all reasons why these Colombian animals are at risk of going extinct. Some notable examples:
- Cotton-headed Tamarin
- Brown Spider Monkey
- Giant Otter
- Colombian Weasel
- Black-Legged Poison Dart Frog
- Mountain Tapir
Colombian Animals List
- Barn Owl
- Black Widow Spider
- Caiman Lizard
- Collared Peccary
- Cotton-top Tamarin
- Electric Eel
- Flying Squirrel
- Fruit Bat
- Geoffroys Tamarin
- Glow Worm
- Guinea Pig
- Harpy Eagle
- Hercules Beetle
- Honey Bee
- Horned Frog
- Howler Monkey
- Keel-Billed Toucan
- Leopard Frog
- Marine Toad
- Mexican Free-Tailed Bat
- Monarch Butterfly
- Mountain Lion
- Peregrine Falcon
- Amazon River Dolphin (Pink Dolphin)
- Poison Dart Frog
- Pygmy Marmoset
- River Turtle
- Roseate Spoonbill
- Saber-Toothed Tiger
- Scarlet Macaw
- Silver Dollar
- Snapping Turtle
- Spider Monkey
- Squirrel Monkey
- Stick Insect
- Tree Frog
- Vampire Bat
- White-Faced Capuchin
- Wolf Spider
- Woolly Monkey
- X-Ray Tetra
Animals in Colombia FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
What types of animals live in Colombia?
Colombia has a variety of wildlife including insects, reptiles, mammals, birds, amphibians, and fish. Unfortunately, many animals living in Colombia are considered Endangered and at risk of going extinct. One example is the blue-billed curassow.
What dangerous animals live in Colombia?
There are many dangerous animals living in Colombia. The group includes: the black caiman crocodile, the poison dart frog, the Chocoan Forest pit viper, and the bullet ant.
Are there tigers in Colombia?
Are there jaguars in Colombia?
Yes. Jaguars live in the tropical rainforests as well as on savannas and grasslands in Colombia.