Animal Travels: Peru

PERUVIAN WOOLLY MONKEY
(Lagothrix cana)
Endangered

57bafda8408a8.image.jpgMAJOR THREATS
This species is heavily hunted and infants are much favoured as pets. The females with offspring tend to be targeted by hunters, so that they can sell the infants as pets. Hunting is the main threat prior to deforestation, and colonization severely reduces their numbers.  Heavy deforestation also occurs in many parts of this species’ range.

FUN FACT
Can move at speeds of up to 35mph.


HUMBOLDT PENGUIN
(Spheniscus humboldti)
Vulnerable

Humboldt_penguin.jpgMAJOR THREATS
Fisheries in Peru exploit the main prey of the penguins, greatly reducing their prey base.
Alien species such as rats predate on the eggs of the penguins and also on young chicks. There have also been reports of feral cats on the islands in Peru which can cause a predation risks to both adult and juvenile individuals.
Andean foxes can enter coastal reserves in Peru and prey on the adult and juvenile penguins.
Humboldt Penguins are extremely sensitive to human presence which reduces the success of breeding at frequently visited sites.
These penguins are also at risk from habitat loss and pollution.

FUN FACT
Humboldt penguins were named for the German scientist, Alexander Von Humboldt, who explored Cuba, Mexico, and South America in 1799.


SCARLET MACAW
(Ara macao)
Least Concern

scarlet-macaw-pictures.jpg
MAJOR THREATS
There are currently no major threats to the Scarlet Macaw but their population trend is currently decreasing. It is predicted that the population of Scarlet Macaws will drop by around 25% in the next 3 generations.

 

 

FUN FACT
They are said to have the intelligence of a 4-8 year old child.

 

 


AMAZON RIVER DOLPHIN (BOTO)
(Inia geoffrensis)
Data Deficient

shutterstock_164233874-1024x679.jpgMAJOR THREATS
Accidental death in fishing gear such as in gill nets. 
Deliberate killing for fish bait.
Fishing with explosives although illegal in most places is still common in areas of the Amazon.
Damming of rivers.
Between 1956 and the early 1970s, more than 100 botos were live-captured and exported mostly to the USA, Europe and Japan

FUN FACT
These dolphins are PINK!


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Animal Travels: Antarctica

Antarctica is over 5 million square miles and has some extremely well adapted species living there!


PENGUINS
There are six species of penguin that call Antarctica home.

  1. Aptenodytes_forsteri_-Snow_Hill_Island,_Antarctica_-adults_and_juvenile-8.jpgEmperor Penguin
    (Aptenodytes forsteri)
    Near Threatened
    595,000 mature individuals remaining in the wild with no current major threats.
  2. 152708-004-5B3C83E2.jpgChinstrap Penguin
    (Pygoscelis antarcticus)
    Least Concern
    Declining population trend can be attributed to threats from recent volcanic activity, human disturbances of breeding colonies and the harvesting of Antarctic krill which makes up the bulk of their diet.
  3. gentoopenguin.jpgGentoo Penguin
    (Pygoscelis papua)
    Least Concern
    774,000 mature individuals.
    Major threats come from the collection of eggs and disturbances from tourism which decrease breeding productivity.
  4. main-qimg-84bebfb4702b4086740772ded2d31fd8-c.jpegAdelie Penguin
    (Pygoscelis adeliae)
    Least Concern
    7580,000 mature individuals remaining in the wild and an increasing population trend.
    Their major threats come from climate change, the building of research stations which change their habitat and from the disturbance from tourists and scientists.
  5. Right-Whale-Bay-King-Penguin-1.jpgKing Penguin
    (Aptenodytes patagonicus)
    Least Concern
    Increasing population trend but faces threats from increasing sea temperatures, disturbance from helicopter flights which causes breeding failure; and disturbances from scientists and tourists.
  6. Macaroni_penguin.jpgMacaroni Penguin
    Eudyptes chrysolophus)
    Vulnerable
    Decreasing population trend which has faced major threats from commercial fishing, the warming of oceans, disturbance from scientists and tourists. Also increasing numbers of Fur Seal is leading to increased predation.

KILLER WHALE
(Orcinus orca)
There are 5 types of Orca in Antarctic waters.

  1. antarctic_type_a.jpgType A
    A very large orca: reaching lengths of up to 31 feet.
    Hunt Minke whales.
  2. Pitman whale and seal.jpgType B Large
    Also known as Pack Ice Orcas.
    Hunt seals and are famous for their “wave-washing” hunting technique.
  3. 17b769b5aef86dc4c15d519f3e4b3f60-nature-animals-wild-animals.jpg
    Type B Small
    Also known as Gerlache Orcas.
    They are believed to feed on penguins.
  4. full_Paul_Ensor__Gateway_Antarctica__University_of_Canterbury_5322_small.jpgType C
    Also known as the Ross Sea Orca.
    They are the smallest orcas reaching lengths of 20 feet.
  5. image_1172_1-killer-whale-type-d.jpgType D
    These are Subantarctic orcas.
    They look different from other orcas and are easily distinguished by their large melon.
    Very little is known about these orcas.

To read more about orcas, you can read my post “All About Killer Whales


Leopard-Seal-1.jpgLEOPARD SEAL
(Hydrurga leptonyx)
Least Concern
18,000 mature individuals remaining in the wild.

MAJOR THREATS
There are no major threats from human activity currently. However, climate change is leading to loss of sufficient pack ice for pupping and resting. There is also becoming less penguins available as prey for the leopard seals.

 

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Animal Travels: Galapagos

The Galapagos’ Islands are home to a multitude of species, many of which are endemic and so can’t be found anywhere else in the world.

Unknown.jpegStarting with the Galapagos’ most famous resident the Galapagos Giant Tortoise. There are currently ten subspecies of Giant Tortoise. The 11th subspecies’ final individual “Lonesome George” died in June 2016. They are best viewed on the islands of Isabela, Santiago, Pinzon and Santa Cruz. All 10 subspecies are now classed as Endangered, Critically Endangered or Extinct in the Wild by the IUCN Red List.

Cq_SVXbXYAASyaZPerhaps the other most famous residents of the Galapagos are its finches, made famous as Darwin’s Finches and in his research into evolution. There are lots of endemic species of finch on the islands, such as the Ground Finches, Vegetarian Finch and the Tree Finches among others. The finches can be viewed on all the islands depending on which species you are looking for. Luckily, the majority of the Galapagos finches are not threatened of facing any major threats to their numbers.

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The Galapagos Penguin is classed as Endangered by IUCN

Moving onto more marine animals. The Galapagos has its own species of penguin, which is one of the smallest species of penguin in the world; and is the only penguin to breed entirely within the tropics. The Galapagos penguins are best viewed on the islands of Santiago, Bartolome, Isabela and Fernandina. Unfortunately, these penguins are facing issues such as introduced species hunting them, oil spills are other human made issues.

Carcharhinus-galapagensis-06

Galapagos sharks are Near Threatened

Penguins aren’t the other marine animal that the Galapagos has its own species of. They are also home to the Galapagos shark. These sharks are best viewed around the islands of Floreana and San Cristobal. They are silverly-grey shark with a light underbelly. Humans bait-fishing activities are causing problems for these sharks and their populations are in decline.

 

americas_galapagos_aggressor_whaleshark2_galleryAlong with the Galapagos shark, the islands are also home to several other shark species such as the Hammerhead sharks and the Whale Shark, which can all be viewed off the coasts of the islands.

imagesca0oqf2z.jpgOne of the biggest draws to the Galapagos islands is for diving wishing to see Manta Rays in all their glory. Mantas are the largest of the rays and are extremely widespread in the Galapagos waters.

 

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The Galapagos Sea Lion is also facing trouble and is classified as ‘Endangered’

The Galapagos also has its fair share of marine mammals. The islands are home to the endemic Galapagos sea lion and the Galapagos fur seal. The sea lions pups are often seen swimming with humans due to their curious nature. The sea lions make their home alone the coasts of the islands. However, the fur seals are much shier and make their home on the rocky shores of the islands.

The waters around the Galapagos islands are also filled with many marine mammals, some are merely visitors, but some are now considered residents.