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Amazon Rainforest-Endangered Animals

Updated on January 30, 2014

Amazon rainforest many species

The Amazon rain forest is home to many species some of which are

1 2.6 million insect species

2 Over 42,000 plant species

3 1300 birds

4 Over 420 amphibians

5 About 420 mammals

6 2,200 fishes

The Amazon Rainforest an endless treasure of new Species

An endless treasure of new Species

We are blessed with a planet teeming with life and unique beauty that it constantly challenging our appreciation and knowledge of the planet we live; so far we have not yet discovered another planet in our solar system quite like earth. Our blue planet derives its life given oxygen through the delicate interplay between fauna (plant life), animals and evaporation; trees have helped sustain the planet offering a home and refuge to different types of creatures.

In a recent expedition to the Amazon rainforest scientists discovered new and exciting species of animal and plant life that have not been seen before, the forest is known for its diverse and important role in the delicate balance of life.

The Amazon rainforest

The Amazon rainforest covers a vast area starting from South America ranging to Suriname, Colombia, and Brazil, Venezuela and regions of Ecuador, Guyana and Bolivia. The total land mass is 5.5million kilometers or 2.1 million square miles. Scientists estimates that the rainforest has been in existence for about 50 billion years and can boast of several billion trees and a large bio diverse plant and animal life. Most of the forest is contained almost exclusively in the territory of Brazil. The rich biodiversity makes the forest one of the last natural habitats for plant and animal life.

Seclusion has made the rainforest a treasure trove for exploration and the discovery of new and endangered species, they have become highly adapted to the environment such that any change in habitat or human incursion can easily render the wild life extinct, it is estimated that ten percent of all known species worldwide can be found in this unique habitat.

A rare amazon frog

 A Rare amazon frog
A Rare amazon frog | Source

Amazon rainforest many species

The Amazon rain forest is home to many species some of which are

1 2.6 million insect species

2 Over 42,000 plant species

3 1300 birds

4 Over 420 amphibians

5 About 420 mammals

6 2,200 fishes

In a recent publication according to the World wildlife Fund (WWF) scientists over a four year period identified about 441 new species of plant and animals which included the spotting of a very brightly colored rare snake, a vegetarian piranha, rare pink orchid, small thumbnail sized frog several new bird species and a primate (monkey).

The Cercosaura hynoides

Eggs collected by researches from the Amazon rainforest hatched into very rare lizards of the Cercosaura family, the lizard in the class of reptilian, order of squamata is related to other Cercosaura species like Cercosaura ocellate, argulus, eigenmanni and several others, all of them are very rare lizards and account for only about 20 species.

The new specie of lizard is widely distributed in the Amazon region of Colombia around the locality of vereda de portachuelo 41 degree north and 73.8 degrees west. The lizard has many distinctive features that clearly differentiate it from other Cercosaura species. It has 5 supralabials and infralabials, 1 palpebral scale, 3 supraoculars, 7-13 longitude rows of ventral’s, small scales arranged laterally, 20 sub digital lamellae on the toe and about 12 femoral hind limb pores.

The total number of new animal and plant life discovered by the scientists are 1 mammal, 258 plants, 84 fish, 58 amphibians, 22 reptiles, 18 birds countless insects- invertebrates, making a total of 441 species.

List of World wildlife fund discoveries

1 258 plants

2 1 mammal

3 22 reptiles

4 58 amphibians

5 18 birds

6 Countless insects

Callicebus Caquetensis

The rare and much endangered specie of monkey found by the research team was Callicebus Caquetensis; the primate is recognized as critically endangered with almost the entire species of titi monkey already extinct. The red monkey is from the class Mammalia, order of primate and kingdom Animalia, the following features can be found in the primate.

Red bushy and bearded color, brown body color, lighter shade tail, red underside and is estimated that there are only about 240 adults left. They live in small groups or colonies led by an Alfa male and female, the animal has a low birth rate with the female only managing a baby within a year. Their entire geographical rang does not exceed 40sqmiles and the uniqueness extends to their baby monkeys who purr like cats when contented.

Piranha

The explorers found a vegetarian piranha which is extraordinary considering the reputed aggressive nature of some species of piranha. Other piranhas have cerate sharp teeth on both jaws and are known to be very fierce predators with a taste for blood and meat. The rare fish feeds predominantly on leaves and can be found in fresh water like its fellow omnivores, the fish can be found among the rocky bottom where it also lays its eggs. Most piranha species can be found in Guyana, Orinoco Lake and parts of Venezuela, the fish is said to measure about 20 inches wide and weigh 9 pounds and can be located around the upper drainage of the river.

A new species of orchid

A new species of orchid
A new species of orchid | Source

Some types of orchids

1 dendrobiums

2 cattleyas

3 spathoglottis

4 phalaenopsis

Pink orchid

Orchid

The orchid general is a flowering plant that has a wide geographical spread and is in the family of herbaceous mono cots they can be found in Europe, Asia and North America, china. They come in different colors and grow well in tropical habitats rain forests. Orchids have generally 3 petals and sepals, the seeds usually are small and plenty, a characteristic of the plant is large masses of pollen and the stem has a fused twisted frame, orchid’s species number over 30,000 with more new varieties discovered yearly. It can be cultivated locally as a decorative plant but in the wild can be found on rocks, climb trees, and grow on hedges.


New Species

Birds, frogs and insects

The number of new species of insects that reside in the Amazon rainforest are too numerous to mention, they range from bees, ants, grasshoppers, moths, butterflies, beetles, spiders and crickets all intertwined in a delicate bio diversified synergy. The bird’s number over 1300 species which include parrots, humming birds, harpy eagles and toucan, their diet differs but they generally eat nuts, fruits, leaves and insects. The frogs come in different shapes sizes and colors; the newest species found is a small sized amphibian.

Different kinds of snakes can be found in the Amazon from pythons to anaconda, rat snakes to green snakes the discovery of the rare highly colorful serpent adds to the large number of reptiles.

Major causes of deforestation

Deforestation is one of the top reasons that have led to the almost total extinction of plant and animal life in the Amazon rainforest, without trees the unique habitats would be lost forever. The causes of deforestation is illegal logging whereby huge tons of trees a chopped for their timber, which are used for construction purposes like building houses, huts, pedestrian bridges and house hold furniture like tables, chares, beds and so on. Anther cause is forest fires which could be from nature or deliberate bush burning to clear fields for farming.

Population encroachment is a big problem to the Amazons balance because the building takes more of the jungle for human habitation; in Columbia the government agencies apply the spraying of chemicals to destroy hidden illicit drug plantations. Another major reason for the extinction of some plants and animals is the illegal killing of wild life by poachers who carry out the clandestine act.

Causes of Amazon forest deforestation

# Illegal logging

# Forest fires

# Bush clearing

# spraying of chemicals

# poaching of wild life

The rare Amazon red monkey

 The rare Amazon-red-monkey
The rare Amazon-red-monkey | Source

Rare Animals

Some other rare animal

Apart from the Amazon rain forest there are many rare and endangered species of animals in various islands such as Australia and the Comoros Island. In America exactly in South California along the glacier covered PeeDee and Sontee river a top ichthyologist Dr. Quattro and his team of scientists and researchers have painstakingly categorized the gene pull and origin of various species of animals along the long Carolina River, identifying two rare and endangered species of fish.

The two prehistoric fishes are the blue barred pygmy sunfish and the Carolina pygmy sunfish that can be found only in the waters of Carolina and cannot be seen anywhere else in the entire world, interestingly the two species live in harmony with other types of gypsy sunfish in the PeeDee and Sontee River. Another interesting find towards the salty ocean was the Carolina hammerhead shark thought to be long extinct but also living in perfect harmony with the more common scalloped hammer head shark.

Some spices are so rare that you can only find them in zoos one of which is the white tiger who number about 240 in captivity, because of their color it is speculated that they may become prey for poachers or trophy hunters if released back into the wild.

Conclusion

The Amazon forest although it has been with us for hundreds of years does not mean some day it would not completely disappear, if we do not preserve this gift of nature it would be lost like countless wildlife sanctuaries around the world especially in Africa. The animals in the Amazon are unique and different to those obtained in other parts of the globe, keeping its natural beauty should be a priority for our children yet unborn.

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    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 3 years ago from Wales

      A brilliant hub and thank you so much for sharing.

      Here's to wishing you a great weekend.

      Eddy.

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      femi 3 years ago from Nigeria

      Thanks very much, wishing you the same.

      tony55.

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