The weirdest animals in South America include a bald dog, a fish that can’t swim, and a blue-footed booby… And that’s just the tip of the iceberg!
A common mammal of South America, the maned wolf is found in parts of Brazil, Paraguay, Bolivia, Argentina and Peru. Its long legs take it to a metre in height, and its hunched frame is often compared to a werewolf, although it moves in a similar way to a deer, almost trotting as it walks.
Pink Fairy Armadillo
This tiny desert mammal of central Argentina grows to around 6 inches in length and has a strange dorsal shell, which is only attached to its body at a small point on its spine. The pink fairy armadillo is a threatened species, rarely spotted in the wild as it mainly lives underground, and none have survived in captivity.
The blue-footed booby is a seabird mainly found on the North Seymour Island in the Galapagos. The name ‘booby’ comes from the Spanish word ‘bobo’, which means clown or fool, as the bird is incredibly clumsy on land, and is considered stupid for its curious nature which often gets it into trouble.
Peruvian Hairless Dog
This strange, hairless dog is one of the oldest breeds, first recorded on ancient Incan pottery. They come in all sizes and colours, some with tufts of hair and others completely bald. They need to be moisturised daily to prevent their skin from cracking, as well as wearing clothing or sun cream on hot days to stop them burning.
Definitely one of the weirdest animals in South America, the bizarre looking Red-Lipped Batfish lives in the deeper waters of the Galapagos Islands. They can grow up to 40cm long, and although they look quite disconcerting, they are actually completely harmless. They are terrible swimmers, and have evolved to use their pectoral fins as legs to drag them along the seabed…
The mara is native to Argentina, specifically the Patagonian region, and their strange appearance resembles a rabbit with long legs, although they are more closely related to guinea pigs. Their feet are tiny, almost hoof-like, and their hind legs are considerably longer and stronger than their front, adding to the mara’s weird appearance.
More of the weirdest animals in South America
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