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42 Animals That Start With A – List, Pictures & Facts

This article celebrates a collection of fascinating creatures that share one common trait: they all begin with the letter ‘A’ – the first letter of the alphabet. From the elusive aardvark, a lone representative of its order, to the magnificent African elephant, the largest land animal on Earth, each of these animals is sure to captivate you!

Get ready to embark on a journey through the animal kingdom’s ‘A-list,’ exploring varied habitats, diverse diets, and surprising adaptations. Each creature comes with a surprising fun fact, ensuring you’ll walk away with newfound respect and understanding for these amazing animals.

So sit back, relax, and let the journey through the natural world’s ‘A-list’ begin!

List of Animals That Start With A

Animals Starting With A: Pictures and Facts

Each animal name/title is a link you can click to learn more about them!


Aardvark Fact Sheet - Hero
  • Scientific name: Orycteropus afer
  • Type of animal: Mammal
  • Where found: Africa

Native to Africa, the aardvark is an extraordinary creature that resembles nothing else on Earth. Although it’s sometimes called an “ant bear,” it is not related to bears, nor ants, but is actually the only surviving member of the order Tubulidentata.

Aardvarks are adept at burrowing and live in a variety of habitats, from grasslands and woodlands to rainforests. They are nocturnal creatures, primarily feeding on ants and termites. Using their excellent sense of smell, they locate a food source, then use their sharp claws to dig into the mound or nest.

Though they can eat up to 50,000 insects in one night, they are still preyed upon by larger carnivores like lions, leopards, and hyenas. Their conservation status is currently listed as Least Concern, but they are threatened by habitat loss due to agriculture and urbanization.

Did you know? The name ‘aardvark’ comes from South Africa’s Afrikaans language and means ‘earth pig’ or ‘ground pig.’


Aardwolf fact sheet - HeroSource: Wikimedia Commons
  • Scientific name: Proteles cristata
  • Type of animal: Mammal
  • Where found: Eastern and Southern Africa

An insectivore native to East and Southern Africa, the aardwolf is a small, hyena-like mammal. Its name, which means “earth wolf” in Afrikaans, reflects its hyena lineage and burrowing habits. Despite their hyena-like appearance, aardwolves prefer to dine on termites, their primary food source.

They have a long, sticky tongue that they use to lap up thousands of termites during a single night. The aardwolf is nocturnal, sleeping in burrows during the day and emerging at night to feed. Predators include larger carnivores, humans, and occasionally birds of prey.

Although the aardwolf population is stable, they are threatened by habitat destruction and direct persecution by farmers who mistakenly believe they are a threat to livestock.

Did you know? Unlike hyenas, aardwolves do not scavenge or eat large animals; they are one of the few mammalian species that are almost exclusively insectivorous.


Addax fact sheet - Hero
  • Scientific name: Addax nasomaculatus
  • Type of animal: Mammal
  • Where found: Sahara Desert, Africa

Often called the ‘screw horn antelope’ due to its twisted horns, the Addax is a desert-dwelling antelope found in several isolated areas in the Sahara desert.

This species is supremely adapted to live in desert conditions, with broad, flat hooves to prevent sinking into the sand and a coat color that changes from brownish in winter to white in summer to reflect sunlight. Their diet mainly consists of grasses and leaves of any available shrubs, trees, or herbs.

Predators of the Addax include lions, humans, African hunting dogs, and cheetahs. Regrettably, unregulated hunting and habitat loss have decimated the Addax population, and it’s now listed as Critically Endangered, with only a few hundred individuals left in the wild.

Did you know? An Addax is capable of getting most or all of its water from the plants it eats, allowing it to survive in the harsh desert environment without drinking water for long periods.

Adélie Penguin

Adelie Penguin fact sheet - Hero
  • Scientific name: Pygoscelis adeliae
  • Type of animal: Bird
  • Where found: Antarctica

Named after the wife of a French explorer in the 1830s, Adelie Penguins are endemic to the Antarctic continent and the Southern Ocean’s various islands. These penguins are expert swimmers and can dive as deep as 575 feet in search of food, primarily krill, but also fish and squid.

Their main predators are leopard seals, killer whales, and occasionally, skuas and other seabirds targeting their eggs or chicks. Adelie Penguins are incredibly social animals, breeding and living in colonies that can number in the thousands.

While not endangered, climate change and the loss of sea ice pose significant threats to their habitat.

Did you know? Adelie Penguins, like other penguin species, have an extra eyelid that acts like a pair of built-in swimming goggles!

African Elephant

African elephant fact sheet - Hero
  • Scientific name:
    • Loxodonta africana (African bush elephant)
    • Loxodonta cyclotis (African forest elephant)
  • Type of animal: Mammal
  • Where found: Africa

The African Elephant is the largest land animal on Earth, found throughout sub-Saharan Africa in varied habitats, from the savannas and deserts to marshes and forests. They are herbivores, consuming up to 600 pounds of vegetation, including grasses, fruits, and bark, per day.

Predators of young or weak elephants include lions, crocodiles, and hyenas. Humans are undoubtedly their most significant threat, primarily due to poaching and habitat loss. African Elephants are a keystone species, playing an essential role in maintaining biodiversity in their ecosystems. Currently, they are listed as endangered by the IUCN.

Did you know? African Elephants communicate over long distances of up to 2 miles with low-frequency sounds called infrasounds that humans can’t hear!

African Grey Parrot

African Grey Parrot - Hero
  • Scientific name: Psittacus erithacus
  • Type of animal: Bird
  • Where found: Central Africa

The African Grey Parrot, scientifically known as Psittacus erithacus, is a medium-sized parrot native to the dense rainforests of West and Central Africa. The species is globally recognized for its high intelligence and exceptional mimicry skills, boasting a diverse repertoire of human speech and sounds.

African Grey Parrots primarily feed on fruits, nuts, and seeds, supplementing their diet with snails and insects for protein. They have few natural predators but often fall prey to snakes and birds of prey.

The most significant threats to their survival are habitat destruction and illegal capture for the pet trade, leading to their classification as endangered on the IUCN Red List.

Did you know? An African Grey Parrot named Alex, trained by animal psychologist Dr. Irene Pepperberg, was able to learn and understand more than 100 words, demonstrating cognitive skills equivalent to a human toddler.

African Wild Dog

African Wild Dog sheet - Hero
  • Scientific name: Lycaon pictus
  • Type of animal: Mammal
  • Where found: Africa

African Wild Dogs, also known as Painted Dogs, are one of Africa’s most endangered species. This unique canine species is native to the open plains and sparse woodlands of Sub-Saharan Africa.

These highly social animals live in packs with complex hierarchies and exhibit cooperative behavior, particularly when hunting. Their diet primarily consists of antelope, complemented by rodents, birds, and insects. Lions and hyenas are known to prey on African Wild Dogs, and humans pose a significant threat through habitat encroachment and conflict.

Did you know? Unlike other canine species, African Wild Dogs have only four toes per foot instead of five. This anatomical feature is thought to enhance their speed and agility during high-speed chases.

Agama Lizard

Agama Lizard sheet - Hero
  • Scientific name: Agama spp.
  • Type of animal: Reptile
  • Where found: Africa

Agama Lizards are a group of small to medium-sized reptiles found across Africa, characterized by their distinctive coloration and ‘bobbing’ communication behavior. The most well-known species is the Red-Headed Rock Agama, the males of which have a vivid red or orange head, neck, and shoulders.

They inhabit a wide range of habitats, from arid deserts to moist savannahs. Agama Lizards are primarily insectivorous, but they also consume vegetation, making them omnivorous. Predation threats come from snakes, birds, and larger reptiles.

Did you know? Males of many Agama species can change color during courtship displays or territorial disputes, similar to chameleons, although their color-changing ability is more limited.


Albatross fact sheet - Hero
  • Scientific name: family Diomedeidae
  • Type of animal: Bird
  • Where found: North Pacific & Southern Ocean

The Albatross is a large seabird renowned for its extraordinary flying capabilities. There are about 22 species of Albatrosses, all of which are associated with Southern Hemisphere oceans, with the exception of the Black-browed Albatross, which can also be spotted in the North Pacific Ocean.

Albatrosses are among the largest flying birds, and they are excellent gliders, capable of covering vast distances over the sea in search of food, primarily squid and krill.

Sharks and larger predatory birds pose a threat to Albatrosses, but the principal threats come from human activities, such as longline fishing and marine pollution.

Did you know? Albatrosses have the longest wingspan of any bird, with the Wandering Albatross’s wingspan reaching up to 11 feet (3.4 meters).

Aldabra Giant Tortoise

Aldabra giant tortoise on grass
  • Scientific name: Aldabrachelys gigantea
  • Type of animal: Reptile
  • Where found: Seychelles

The Aldabra Giant Tortoise is one of the largest tortoise species in the world, endemic to the Aldabra Atoll in the Seychelles. This species can reach up to 1.1 m (3.6 ft) in length and weigh as much as 250 kg (550 lb).

Their diet primarily consists of vegetation, including leaves, grasses, and woody plant stems. Although adult Aldabra Giant Tortoises have no natural predators, young tortoises are vulnerable to crabs and birds.

The species was once on the brink of extinction but has made a successful recovery thanks to rigorous conservation efforts.

Did you know? Some individuals have been known to live over 200 years, making the Aldabra Giant Tortoise one of the longest-lived animals on the planet.

Alligator (American)

Alligator fact sheet - Hero
  • Scientific name: Alligator mississippiensis
  • Type of animal: Reptile
  • Where found: United States, Mexico

The American Alligator, native to the Southeastern United States, is a large reptile noted for its broad snout and powerful tail. These creatures, reaching up to 4.6 m (15 ft) in length, inhabit freshwater habitats like swamps and marshes.

American Alligators are apex predators with a diet that includes fish, amphibians, birds, and mammals. Although hunted by humans for their hide, protections have helped their populations recover.

Did you know? The temperature of an alligator’s nest determines the sex of the hatchlings: warmer temperatures produce males, while cooler temperatures produce females.

Alligator Gar

Alligator Gar sheet - Hero
  • Scientific name: Atractosteus spatula
  • Type of animal: Fish
  • Where found: Southern United States

The Alligator Gar is one of the largest freshwater fishes in North America, characterized by its long, sharp-toothed snout. Found mainly in the Southern United States, they are ambush predators feeding primarily on fish, but also birds and small mammals.

They have few natural predators, with humans posing the most significant threat.

Did you know? Alligator Gars can breathe in both water and air, allowing them to survive in conditions where oxygen levels are low.

Alligator Snapping Turtle

Alligator Snapping Turtle on grass
  • Scientific name: Macrochelys temminckii
  • Type of animal: Reptile
  • Where found: United States

The Alligator Snapping Turtle is one of the heaviest freshwater turtles in the world, primarily found in the southeastern United States. They are characterized by their strong jaws, capable of crushing fish, frogs, snakes, worms, clams, and even other turtles.

Their shell provides protection from most predators, but eggs and young turtles are preyed upon by raccoons, large fish, and birds.

Did you know? Alligator Snapping Turtles use a unique hunting method where they lure fish into their mouths with a wormlike appendage on their tongue.


Alpacas in the Andes
  • Scientific name: Lama pacos
  • Type of animal: Mammal
  • Where found: South America

Native to the Andean region of South America, Alpacas are domesticated animals known for their soft and durable wool. Alpacas are herbivores, primarily grazing on grass, hay, and silage (fermented high moisture stored fodder).

They are highly social animals and live in family groups consisting of a territorial alpha male, females, and their young. Predators include pumas, foxes, and some birds of prey.

Did you know? Alpacas hum as a way of communicating, and each one has its unique humming tune.

Amazon River Dolphin

Amazon_river_dolphin_2Source: Wikimedia Commons
  • Scientific name: Inia geoffrensis
  • Type of animal: Mammal
  • Where found: South America

The Amazon River Dolphin, also known as the pink river dolphin, is an iconic species native to the Amazon and Orinoco River basins in South America. These fascinating mammals are known for their distinctive pink color and can reach lengths of 2.5 m (8.2 ft) and weights of 185 kg (408 lb).

Their diet is incredibly diverse, including at least 53 different species of fish. Humans and caimans are their main predators. Despite being protected by law, they are threatened by habitat loss and incidental capture in fishing gear.

Did you know? Unlike most species of dolphins, Amazon River Dolphins have the ability to turn their head side to side because of the flexibility of their cervical vertebrae.

Amur Leopard

Amur Leopard sheet - Hero
  • Scientific name: Panthera pardus orientalis
  • Type of animal: Mammal
  • Where found: East Asia

The Amur Leopard, a subspecies of leopard, is found in the Russian Far East and China. Known for their thick, soft coat, which has a beautiful pattern, Amur Leopards are well adapted to cold and snowy environments.

They primarily prey on roe deer, sika deer, and hares, while their natural predators include tigers and wolves. With less than 100 individuals left in the wild, they are considered critically endangered due to poaching, deforestation, and human encroachment.

Did you know? Amur Leopards are solitary animals, and each individual controls a large territory, which they mark with scent.


Anaconda fact sheet - Hero
  • Scientific name: Eunectes spp.
  • Type of animal: Reptile
  • Where found: South America

The Anaconda, specifically the Green Anaconda, is the heaviest and one of the longest known snake species, primarily found in South America’s tropical rainforests. They are excellent swimmers and spend most of their life in or around water.

Their diet consists of a variety of prey, including fish, birds, mammals, and other reptiles. Jaguars and large caimans are among the few predators of adult Anacondas.

Did you know? Anacondas are non-venomous constrictors, they coil their bodies around their prey and squeeze until the animal can no longer breathe.


  • Scientific name: family Engraulidae
  • Type of animal: Fish
  • Where found: All oceans

Anchovies are small, common saltwater forage fish, widely found in the Atlantic, Indian, and Pacific Oceans.

They feed on plankton and fry (young fish), and are themselves a crucial food source for many marine species, including larger fish, seabirds, and marine mammals. Humans also heavily fish them for use in cooking and for making fish meal.

Did you know? Despite their small size, Anchovies travel in large schools that can extend up to 30 km (18.6 miles) long.

Andean Condor

Andean condor flying
  • Scientific name: Vultur gryphus
  • Type of animal: Bird
  • Where found: South America

The Andean Condor, recognized by its large size, broad wings, and white ruff, is a national symbol of many South American countries.

Primarily found in the Andes mountains and Pacific coasts of western South America, they are known to feed on carcasses of deer, cattle, and other large animals. They have very few natural predators, and their greatest threat comes from human activities such as habitat loss and lead poisoning.

Did you know? The Andean Condor has one of the longest life spans of any bird, with some individuals living up to 75 years in captivity.


Sea Anemone sheet - Hero
  • Scientific name: order Actiniaria
  • Type of animal: Cnidarian
  • Where found: All oceans

Sea anemones, named after the terrestrial flowering plant due to their colorful appearance, are marine invertebrates found in coastal regions worldwide. They come in various shapes and sizes, with the largest reaching up to 2 meters in diameter.

Anemones are carnivores and feed on small fish and shrimp using their venom-filled tentacles. Their predators include sea spiders, certain starfish, and nudibranchs. Some species are threatened by habitat loss and climate change.

Did you know? Many anemones form symbiotic relationships with green algae, or with various species of clownfish, which are immune to the anemone’s sting.

Angelfish (Freshwater)

Freshwater angelfish sheet - Hero
  • Scientific name: Pterophyllum scalare
  • Type of animal: Fish
  • Where found: South America

Freshwater angelfish are a species of cichlid and are one of the most commonly kept freshwater aquarium fish.

Native to the Amazon Basin, Orinoco Basin, and various rivers in the Guiana Shield in tropical South America, they feed on small crustaceans and invertebrates. Their primary threats are larger fish and aquatic birds.

Did you know? Unlike their name suggests, freshwater angelfish are not related to marine angelfish but got their name due to their distinctive shape.

Angelfish (Marine)

Saltwater angelfish
  • Scientific name: family Pomacanthidae
  • Type of animal: Fish
  • Where found: Tropical oceans

Saltwater angelfish are known for their vibrant colors and patterns, and they are popular in the aquarium trade. They inhabit coral reefs in the tropical Atlantic, Indian, and mostly western Pacific oceans.

They are omnivorous and consume a diet of sponges, algae, corals, and small invertebrates. Their natural predators include larger fish and eels.

Did you know? Many species of saltwater angelfish change their color patterns as they grow.


Anglerfish fact sheet - Hero
  • Scientific name: order Lophiiformes
  • Type of animal: Fish
  • Where found: Oceans worldwide

Anglerfish are one of the most interesting and peculiar species found in the deep sea. Known for their characteristic mode of predation, where a fleshy growth from the fish’s head (the esca or ‘lure’) acts as bait, they are fascinating creatures.

Depending on the species, their diet varies but primarily includes fish and cephalopods. They have very few natural predators due to their extreme deep-sea habitat.

Did you know? In many species of anglerfish, the males become parasitic on the females, permanently attaching to them and over time merging their tissues and circulatory systems.


Leaf cutting ants
  • Scientific name: family Formicidae
  • Type of animal: Insect
  • Where found: All continents except Antarctica

Ants are one of the most successful insects due to their social organization. They can be found almost everywhere on the planet, from deserts to grasslands to forests.

Their diet is varied and includes leaves, fungi, other insects, and sweet substances. Predators include birds, spiders, other insects, and even humans in some cultures.

Did you know? Some ant species are known for their symbiotic relationship with aphids, where they protect the aphids and, in return, get a sugary secretion known as honeydew.


Anteaters sheet - Hero
  • Scientific name: suborder Vermilingua
  • Type of animal: Mammal
  • Where found: Central and South America

The Anteater, or the Giant Anteater, is a mammal native to Central and South America. They are known for their elongated snout and long tongue, which helps them consume up to 30,000 ants and termites a day.

Predators of the Anteater include jaguars, cougars, and humans. They are threatened by habitat destruction and hunting.

Did you know? When threatened, an Anteater can stand on its hind legs and use its tail for balance, making it appear much larger to potential predators.


Antelopes sheet - Hero
  • Scientific name: family Bovidae
  • Type of animal: Mammal
  • Where found: Africa, Asia

Antelopes represent a wide variety of species in the Bovidae family, found primarily in Africa but also in parts of Asia and the Middle East. They are herbivores, feeding on grasses, shoots, and leaves.

Predators include lions, cheetahs, hyenas, and humans. Many species are threatened due to habitat loss and hunting.

Did you know? The term “antelope” is not a taxonomic group but is used to refer to many species that are similar to each other in some ways, such as being fast, slender, and deer-like.


Apes fact sheet - Hero
  • Scientific name: superfamily Hominoidea
  • Type of animal: Mammal
  • Where found: Africa, Asia

Apes, also known as hominoids, are a group of primates that include gibbons, orangutans, gorillas, bonobos, chimpanzees, and humans. They are native to Africa and Southeast Asia, with humans having the widest range of any primate species.

Apes are omnivores, though their diet varies by species, with fruit making up a significant portion. They face threats from various predators including big cats, crocodiles, and humans. Habitat loss, disease, and hunting pose significant threats to non-human apes.

Did you know? Unlike monkeys, most apes lack a tail and have a broader chest, which allows for more flexibility in the shoulder and arm movements.


Arapaima - HeroSource: Wikimedia Commons
  • Scientific name: Arapaima gigas
  • Type of animal: Fish
  • Where found: South America

The Arapaima or Pirarucu is one of the largest freshwater fish in the world, native to the Amazon and Essequibo basins of South America. Their diet mainly consists of fish, but they’ve also been known to eat small birds and mammals.

The primary predators of Arapaima are humans. Overfishing and habitat destruction have led to a decrease in their population.

Did you know? The Arapaima has a unique adaptation that allows it to breathe air. This adaptation enables it to live in oxygen-depleted water conditions where other fish can’t survive.


Archerfish sheet - HeroSource: Wikimedia Commons
  • Scientific name: Toxotes spp.
  • Type of animal: Fish
  • Where found: South Asia to Melanesia

The Archerfish is a unique species native to India, the Philippines, Australia, and Polynesia. It is famous for its hunting method: it knocks down insects and other prey above the water’s surface by shooting a stream of water from its mouth.

Its diet mainly includes insects and small animals. Predators include larger fish and birds. They are not currently considered endangered.

Did you know? The Archerfish can adjust the power of its shot according to the size of the prey and can hit targets up to 3 meters away.

Arctic Fox

Arctic fox in the snow
  • Scientific name: Vulpes lagopus
  • Type of animal: Mammal
  • Where found: Arctic regions

The Arctic Fox, also known as the white fox or snow fox, is an incredibly hardy animal that can survive frigid Arctic temperatures as low as -58°F in the treeless lands where it makes its home.

Their diet mainly includes lemmings, but they are also known to eat birds, eggs, and fish. Predators include polar bears, wolves, and golden eagles. Climate change and disease pose a threat to their survival.

Did you know? The Arctic Fox’s fur changes colors with the seasons: it is white in the winter to blend in with the snow, and brown in the summer to blend in with the tundra.

Arctic Hare

Arctic hare in snowy rocks
  • Scientific name: Lepus arcticus
  • Type of animal: Mammal
  • Where found: Arctic regions

The Arctic Hare, also known as the Polar Rabbit, is a species of hare highly adapted to living in the Arctic tundra and other icy biomes.

They are herbivores, feeding on woody plants, mosses, and lichens when available, and buds, twigs, roots, and bark in the winter. The hare’s main predators are the Arctic fox, red fox, gray wolf, and ermine.

Did you know? To conserve heat, the Arctic Hare often digs shelters in the snow and huddles up in a tight ball to keep its limbs and face protected from the cold.

Arctic Wolf

Arctic wolf relaxing
  • Scientific name: Canis lupus arctos
  • Type of animal: Mammal
  • Where found: Canadian Arctic

Found in the northernmost regions of North America and Greenland, the Arctic Wolf is a subspecies of the Gray Wolf.

Despite harsh weather conditions and scarcity of food, Arctic Wolves mostly eat musk oxen and Arctic hares, but can go for several weeks without food. The primary predator to the Arctic Wolf is man, due to hunting and destruction of their natural habitat.

Did you know? The Arctic Wolf is one of the few species of wolves that is not threatened, thanks to its isolation and remote home range.


Armadillo in Texas
  • Scientific name: order Cingulata
  • Type of animal: Mammal
  • Where found: Central and South America

Armadillos are New World placental mammals, known for their leathery armor shell. Found in the Americas, their diet primarily includes insects, grubs, and other invertebrates.

Armadillos face predators like coyotes, wolves, bears, and humans who hunt them for their meat and shell. Their status varies from species to species, but several are threatened.

Did you know? Armadillos are the only living mammals that wear such shells!

Asian Elephant

Group of Asian elephants
  • Scientific name: Elephas maximus
  • Type of animal: Mammal
  • Where found: South and Southeast Asia

Native to Southeast Asia, Asian Elephants are the continent’s largest terrestrial mammals. They are herbivores, feeding on a diet that includes grasses, roots, fruit, and bark.

They face threats from tigers, leopards, and wild dogs. But their most significant threat is human conflict and habitat loss. Asian Elephants are listed as endangered.

Did you know? Asian Elephants are highly intelligent and have been known to show behaviors like grief, self-awareness, and playfulness.

Asian Giant Hornet

Asian giant hornet sheet - HeroSource: Wikimedia Commons
  • Scientific name: Vespa mandarinia
  • Type of animal: Insect
  • Where found: East,  South and Southeast Asia

The Asian Giant Hornet, including the subspecies Japanese Giant Hornet, is the world’s largest hornet native to East Asia, South Asia, Mainland Southeast Asia, and parts of the Russian Far East.

They prey on other insects and can decimate whole hives of honeybees. Predators include birds and larger insects. The Asian Giant Hornet is not considered endangered.

Did you know? An Asian Giant Hornet’s venom can dissolve human tissue and their stings may lead to kidney failure or death in allergic individuals.

Asian Palm Civet

Common_palm_civet_on_logSource: Wikimedia Commons
  • Scientific name: Paradoxurus hermaphroditus
  • Type of animal: Mammal
  • Where found: South and Southeast Asia

The Asian Palm Civet, also known as the Toddy Cat, is a small member of the Viverridae family native to South and Southeast Asia. Omnivorous, its diet includes fruits, berries, and small mammals.

Predators are primarily leopards, large snakes, and crocodiles. Asian Palm Civets are under threat due to habitat loss and hunting.

Did you know? The Asian Palm Civet is known for its role in producing the world’s most expensive coffee, Kopi Luwak. The Civet consumes coffee cherries and the beans inside pass through the digestive tract before being collected from feces and processed into coffee.

Asiatic Black Bear

Asiatic black bear sheet - HeroSource: Wikimedia Commons
  • Scientific name: Ursus thibetanus
  • Type of animal: Mammal
  • Where found: Asia

Also known as the moon bear due to the crescent-shaped patch on its chest, the Asiatic Black Bear is found in the Himalayas, northern parts of the Indian subcontinent, Korea, northeastern China, the Russian far east, the Honshū and Shikoku islands of Japan, and Taiwan.

They are omnivores, eating fruits, nuts, insects, small mammals, and birds. However, they are threatened by habitat loss, poaching for body parts, and conflicts with humans.

Did you know? The Asiatic Black Bear has a unique ability to walk on their hind legs for more than a quarter mile!

Assassin Snail

Assassin Snail sheet - HeroSource: Wikimedia Commons
  • Scientific name: Anentome helena / Clea helena
  • Type of animal: Mollusk
  • Where found: Southeast Asia

The Assassin Snail, a freshwater snail known for its carnivorous eating habits, is native to Southeast Asia. They are infamous for hunting other snails, which has made them popular in aquariums to control overpopulated snail species.

Predators include fish, frogs, and birds. Not endangered, these snails have expanded their range due to the aquarium trade.

Did you know? Despite their deadly name, Assassin Snails are quite slow and it can take them hours to track and consume their prey.

Atlantic Salmon

Atlantic salmon sheet - Hero
  • Scientific name: Salmo salar
  • Type of animal: Fish
  • Where found: Northern Atlantic Ocean

Atlantic Salmon are native to the rivers that flow into the North Atlantic and the Baltic Sea. These fish are born in freshwater, migrate to saltwater, then return to freshwater to reproduce.

Their diet includes small invertebrates when young and fish when mature. Predators include larger fish, birds, and humans. Overfishing, habitat destruction, and pollution have resulted in many populations being endangered.

Did you know? Atlantic Salmon are known for their incredible journeys, swimming up to thousands of miles back to their birthplace to spawn!


Avocet looking for food
  • Scientific name: Recurvirostra spp.
  • Type of animal: Bird
  • Where found: Americas, Europe, Asia, Australia

The Avocet is a distinctively-patterned black and white wader with a long up-curved beak. They are found in Europe, Asia, and North America. Avocets feed on aquatic insects and crustaceans.

Predators include foxes, raccoons, and large birds. Some species are considered at risk due to habitat loss.

Did you know? Avocets sweep their bills from side to side in water to catch food, a feeding style known as ‘scything’.


Axolotl fact sheet - Hero
  • Scientific name: Ambystoma mexicanum
  • Type of animal: Amphibian
  • Where found: Mexico

The Axolotl, a type of salamander that never undergoes a full metamorphosis, is native to the ancient system of lakes and canals near Mexico City. They feed on small prey like worms and insects.

Predators are large fish, birds, and humans. Axolotls are critically endangered due to pollution and urban sprawl.

Did you know? Axolotls have the astounding ability to regenerate lost body parts, even their heart and spinal cord!


Wild aye-ayeSource: Wikimedia Commons
  • Scientific name: Daubentonia madagascariensis
  • Type of animal: Mammal
  • Where found: Madagascar

The Aye-Aye is a long-fingered lemur native to Madagascar. It is omnivorous, feeding primarily on wood-boring insect larvae and fruits.

Predators include the Fossa (Madagascar’s top mammalian predator) and humans. The Aye-Aye is considered endangered due to habitat destruction and hunting.

Did you know? The Aye-Aye is the world’s largest nocturnal primate and uses echolocation to find its prey.

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