Fauna in Colombia

Hummingbird from the Valle de CocoraFew people expect Colombia to have such a rich selection of wildlife... Not only is Colombia’s selection of flora the most diverse in the world, but the country boasts the highest rate of animal species by unit area in the whole world, too. From birds to monkeys to toucans to parrots to sloths to bears, it’s a dazzling array of species that has to be seen to be believed.

=> Colombia also has the largest number of endemic species, with almost 10% of the species in the world living in Colombia. This figure dramatically increases when considering just birds.
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Flamingos La GuajiraIn Colombia almost 2000 species of bird have been described, which is more species of bird than there are in North America and Europe combined. This staggering figure includes one of the biggest birds on earth, the Andean condor. The best place to witness the bulk of this bird life is in the environs of the Amazon (South Colombia), Minca (near Tayrona National Park) and the Coffee Region (West Colombia).

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Turtle of La Guajira

The best places to witness the selection of wildlife in general are Serranía de la Macarena, Gorgona (an island in the Pacific Ocean) and Amacayacu National Park in the Amazon Region.

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Around 20% of the 465 reported mammal species
are endangered or critically endangered. This is mostly due to human activity and, therefore, preventable. The consumption of natural resources in Colombia is a massive problem, but one without an easily identifiable answer since many of the country’s vulnerable communities rely on its natural resources for income and sustenance. Better education in how to raise crops has been suggested as a start.

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Lizard of La GuajiraColombia also has the largest number of amphibians in the world (including the most venomous verterbrae in the world, the phyllobates terribilis), with over 200 different species in danger of extinction thanks to various reasons, including air and water pollution. You can also find reptiles such as crocodiles and snakes throughout the Amazon region.

One of the highlights of Colombia’s wildlife is whale watching, which you can do every year in July on Colombia’s Pacific Coast. These waters are ideal for whales fleeing the South Pole’s waters for a warmer environment and allow the females to give birth. The best places to witness this unforgettable moment in nature are Bahía Solano, Nuquí, Gorgona National Natural Park and Bahía Malaga (Buenaventura).

=> For more, watch our best Colombian animals pictures

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