101 Animals That Start with A

Illustration with different animal species and text saying animals that start with A

There are millions of animal species out there, with many still unidentified. So, there are plenty of creatures that fall under each letter of the alphabet.

This article will cover many animal species starting with A, from aardvark all the way to aye aye.

List of Animals That Start with A

Here are 101 animal species that start with the letter A.

1. Aardvark

Aardvark walking in desert
  • Scientific Name: Orycteropus afer
  • Habitat: Savannas, grasslands, and bushlands of Africa
  • Size: 130 to 180 pounds
  • Diet: Termites, ants

Aardvarks are described as “pig-like mammals” that use their long, sticky tongues to capture their prey. They spend most of their lives in solitude, only socializing when it’s time to mate. Using their large feet, they dig burrows in the soil. Aardvarks can dig up about two feet of soil in only 15 seconds!

2. Aardwolf

Aardwolf in tall grass
  • Scientific Name: Proteles cristata
  • Habitat: Savannas and grasslands of Africa
  • Size: 17 to 31 pounds
  • Diet: Termites and other insects

The aardwolf is a small member of the hyena family. They evolved from an early branch of hyena relatives, so they’re known as “primitive” hyenas. Their teeth evolved to be blunt and incapable of eating meat, so instead, their mouths are designed specifically to feast on termites.

3. Abyssinian

Abyssinian cat relaxing
  • Scientific Name: Felis catus
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 6 to 10 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic cat food

Abyssinians are one of the oldest cat breeds, dating back to Ancient Egypt. Many people praise these cats for their dog-like personalities, but like most cats, they still thrive on independence. They’re far from couch potato cats because they love to be climbing whenever they’re given an opportunity to.

4. Addax

Addax resting in dirt
  • Scientific Name: Addax nasomaculatus
  • Habitat: Deserts of Northern Africa
  • Size: 132 to 200 pounds (females), 220 to 275 pounds (male)
  • Diet: Grass, leaves, herbs

The Addax is a type of antelope, and this breed can be distinguished by its square-shaped teeth that are similar to a cow’s. These animals are scarce in the wild, but zoos and sanctuaries are working on conservation efforts. To survive in the desert, the Addax adapted to rarely need water.

5. Adelie Penguin

Adelie Penguin wings stretched out
  • Scientific Name: Pygoscelis adeliae
  • Habitat: Antarctic land
  • Size: 7 to 13 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, krill, squid

Other than the emperor penguin, the adelie is the only other penguin breed that’s found on Antarctica’s mainland. Like many penguin breeds, adelies are social birds that are almost always seen with others of their species. They communicate using body language and eye movements, and they hunt in large groups to reduce the risk of death.

6. Aesculapian Snake

Aesculapian Snake close-up
  • Scientific Name: Zamenis longissimus
  • Habitat: Trees and bushes of Europe
  • Size: 3 to 6.6 feet long
  • Diet: Rodent, shrews, moles, birds, lizards

Despite looking intimidating, these snakes are non-venomous and low-risk to humans. They can climb vertically up surfaces, so they’re often seen on rooftops and high in trees. An image of this snake wrapped around a rod is a sign of medicine due to its relation to Asclepius, the Greek God of healing.

7. Affenpinscher

Affenpinscher playing outside
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 6 to 13 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

Affenpinscher is a German name that translates to “monkey dog” because this breed’s face resembles a monkey. These dogs may be small, but they still have a lot of spunk. They’re terriers that are full of confidence. They’re always on high alert, and they’re more independent than other small breeds.

8. Afghan Hound

Afghan Hound by nature scenery
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 57 to 75 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

Afghan Hounds are known for their beautiful flowing fur, but they were first bred as hunting dogs. They’re one of the oldest dog breeds in the world, and they’re thought to be as fast as a racehorse. They’re strong, independent, and energetic, so they need to be with an owner that’s assertive.

9. African Buffalo

African buffalo herd
  • Scientific Name: Syncerus caffer
  • Habitat: Grasslands and savannas of Africa
  • Size: 660 to 2,000 pounds
  • Diet: Grass, herbs, shrubs

The African buffalo is the only buffalo species in Africa, but it’s split into four subspecies: Cape buffalo, forest buffalo, West African savanna buffalo, and Central African buffalo. These mammals have heavy, ridged horns that stick straight out on their heads. The horns are used for fighting, including scaring off predators and displaying dominance.

10. African Bullfrog

African Bullfrog close-up
  • Scientific Name: Pyxicephalus adspersus
  • Habitat: Grasslands of sub-Saharan Africa
  • Size: 2 to 4 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, worms, insects, other amphibians

The African bullfrog is one of the largest frog species, and they will eat anything they can tackle and swallow. They have tooth-like growths in their mouths, making them one of the few frog species that have anything resembling teeth. This species is nicknamed the “Pixie frog” due to its scientific name, not its size.

11. African Bush Elephant

African Bush Elephant walking
  • Scientific Name: Loxodonta africana africana
  • Habitat: Forests, savannas, and plains of Africa
  • Size: 7,900 to 12,000 pounds
  • Diet: Grass, roots, fruit

The African bush elephant is one of two African elephant species. They’re the largest living land animals today, weighing over 6 tons. They’re constantly on the move to look for food, and they can drink up to 50 gallons of water a day!

12. African Clawed Frog

African clawed frog floating
  • Scientific Name: Xenopus laevis
  • Habitat: Warm water in grasslands of Africa
  • Size: 1 to 8 ounces
  • Diet: Insects, spiders, small fish

This flat frog species spends most of its time at the bottom of lakes and rivers. These frogs can swim at incredible speeds in all directions. They use their claw-like fingers to capture prey and shove it into their mouths, hence the species’ name.

13. African Fat-Tailed Gecko

African Fat-Tailed Gecko tail up
  • Scientific Name: Hemitheconyx caudicinctus
  • Habitat: Savannas of Africa
  • Size: About 9 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, worms, fruit

Hence the name, these lizards can be distinguished by their large, round tails that are almost as wide as the rest of their bodies. They normally live alone and hide in burrows to protect themselves from predators. They can be kept as pets, but they’re a shy gecko breed that won’t interact with their handlers much.

14. African Forest Elephant

African Forest Elephant with baby
  • Scientific Name: Loxodonta cyclotis
  • Habitat: Forests, savannas, and plains of Africa
  • Size: 1,984 to 6,613 pounds
  • Diet: Grass, roots, fruit

Up until recently, scientists thought the African forest elephant and the African bush elephant were the same species. However, the African forest elephant has rounder ears, more toenails, and straighter tusks. They’re also significantly smaller but still massive.

15. African Grey Parrot

African Grey Parrot on tree branch
  • Scientific Name: Psittacus erithacus
  • Habitat: Lowland forests of Central and Western Africa
  • Size: 14 to 19 ounces
  • Diet: Seeds, fruits, nuts

The African grey parrot is an intelligent bird that can talk to and understand humans. They’re native to Africa, but they’re a desirable pet around the world. They can learn their owner’s contact information, and they may sing along to their favorite songs. In the wild, these birds live about 23 years, but in captivity, they can live up to 60 years!

16. African Palm Civet

African Palm Civet in tree
  • Scientific Name: Nandinia binotata
  • Habitat: Rainforests of eastern Africa
  • Size: 3 to 10 pounds
  • Diet: Rodents, snakes, frogs

The African palm civet, also known as the two-spotted palm civet), is in a unique genetic group that differs from other civets. These small carnivores are most closely related to genets, weasels, and mongooses. They’re solitary animals that only leave the safety of the trees for short periods during dawn and dusk to hunt.

17. African Penguin

African penguin walking on beach
  • Scientific Name: Spheniscus demersus
  • Habitat: Rocky ocean islands on the southern African coast
  • Size: 4.5 to 11 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, squid, crustaceans

This is the only penguin species found in Africa. They are suspected to be one of the first types of penguins discovered. While most penguins are known for thriving in cold climates, these birds typically live in temperatures between 41 and 68 degrees Fahrenheit.

18. African Spurred Tortoise

African Spurred Tortoise outside
  • Scientific Name: Centrochelys sulcata
  • Habitat: Sahara Desert
  • Size: 79 to 200 pounds
  • Diet: Flowers, cacti, grass, weeds

African spurred tortoises are the largest tortoises living on mainland. They’re often kept as pets, but they’re a huge commitment since they live for 80 to 100 years. To survive the extreme heat of the desert, these reptiles dig deep burrows to cool down.

19. African Wild Dog

African Wild Dog Laying in sand
  • Scientific Name: Lycaon pictus
  • Habitat: Plains and savannas of Africa
  • Size: 39 to 79 pounds
  • Diet: Rodents, antelope, warthogs

African wild dogs, also nicknamed “painted dogs,” look similar to domesticated dogs, but they can hunt down creatures much larger than them. They’re social animals that travel in packs of 10 to 30 canines. They follow a strict ranking system, so each pack is led by a dominant pair of African wild dogs.

20. Africanized Bee

Africanized bees on rock
  • Scientific Name: Apis mellifera scutellata Lepeletier
  • Habitat: Tropical areas
  • Size: About 19 millimeters
  • Diet: Nectar and pollen

Africanized bees are more commonly referred to as “killer bees.” They were first discovered in South America, but they soon spread their way to North America and became an invasive species. They’re called “killer” bees because they often chase people for over a quarter mile. They’re highly aggressive, but it would take about 1,000 stings to kill an adult human.

21. Aggregating Anemone

Aggregating Anemone on rock
  • Scientific Name: Anthopleura elegantissima
  • Habitat: Rocky shores of North America’s Pacific coast
  • Size: 2.5-inch diameter
  • Diet: Copepods, isopods, amphipods

Anemones might not look like animals, but they’re just as alive as any mammal or bird. These unique invertebrates will eat almost anything that passes, including mussels and small fish. The anemone’s tentacles are used to sting and paralyze prey.

22. Airedale Terrier

Airedale Terrier exploring nature
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 40 to 65 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

Airedale Terriers are known for being the largest Terrier breed. Thus, they’ve earned the nickname “King of the Terriers.” They’re one of the few large dog breeds that rarely shed, but don’t be fooled by their cute, curly coats. They’re still high-energy and need plenty of training.

23. Akbash

Akbash howling
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 90 – 140 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

The Akbash is a rare dog breed that’s most commonly seen in Turkey. They’ve been in Turkey for about 3,000 years, but they weren’t introduced to America until the 1970s. They’re usually used as watchdogs, and their gorgeous white coats are often compared to the Great Pyrenees.

24. Akita

Akita head tilt
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 51 to 86 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

Akitas are strong dogs that were bred for working and hunting purposes. They are loyal and brave, but they may be wary of unfamiliar people and animals. In this breed’s native country of Japan, Akita figurines are gifted to children as a symbol of happiness and long lives.

25. Alaskan Klee Kai

Alaskan Klee Kai going for walk
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 16 to 22 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

Alaskan Klee Kais resemble small Siberian Huskies or Alaskan Malamutes. Despite their size, these dogs need lots of exercise just like their larger counterparts. These little dogs are known for being very vocal and expressing themselves through unique sounds, such as yodeling and howling.

26. Alaskan Malamute

Alaskan Malamute walking in snow
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 75 to 85 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

These large, fluffy dogs are commonly used for pulling sleds through snow. The breed is active and intelligent, but also stubborn. So, they need a family who can commit to their exercise and training needs. Due to their thick coats, these dogs shed excessively, especially during season changes.

27. Albacore Tuna

Freshly caught albacore tuna
  • Scientific Name: Thunnus alalunga
  • Habitat: Warm ocean waters
  • Size: 4 feet long, up to 80 pounds
  • Diet: Crustaceans, mollusks, other fish

These large fish have an impressive metabolism, consuming up to 25% of their body weight each day. They often travel in schools which sometimes include other fish species too. The schools can stretch for 19 miles wide. The albacore tuna can swim up to 50 miles per hour.

28. Aldabra Giant Tortoise

Aldabra Giant Tortoise outside
  • Scientific Name: Geochelone gigantea
  • Habitat: Aldabra Island
  • Size: 330 to 550 pounds
  • Diet: Grass, leaves, flowers

The Aldabra giant tortoise has a lot of records. These reptiles are known to be the largest tortoises on the planet and one of the world’s longest-living animals. They can weigh up to 550 pounds, and the oldest one on record was about 255 years old. They reside on Aldabra Island, which is a part of the Seychelles island chain.

29. Allegheny Mountain Dusky Salamander

Allegheny Mountain Dusky Salamander
  • Scientific Name: Desmognathus ochrophaeus
  • Habitat: Moist woodlands of Eastern United States and Canada
  • Size: 2.5 to 4.5 inches long
  • Diet: Worms, insects

Adult mountain dusky salamanders have dark brown patterns to help them blend into their surroundings. They’re a species of “lungless salamander,” meaning they need to keep their skin moist to help them breathe properly. Thus, like most salamanders, they can be found hiding under logs, rocks, or other damp places.

30. Allen’s Swamp Monkey

Curious Allen's Swamp Monkey
  • Scientific Name: Allenopithecus nigroviridis
  • Habitat: Lowland forests of the Congo basin
  • Size: About 4 pounds
  • Diet: Fruits, insects, seeds, fish, small invertebrates

This monkey breed spends most of its time in the trees, but will occasionally come to the ground to forage. They are social creatures, so they’re often seen in groups. They use gestures and calls to communicate with each other. Their means of communication often sound like chirps, grunts, or croaks.

31. Alligator Gar

Alligator Gar Fish Swimming
  • Scientific Name: Atractosteus spatula
  • Habitat: North American rivers, lakes, and swamps
  • Size: Up to 10 feet long, up to 350 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, turtles, birds, and some mammals

Alligator gars are one of the largest freshwater fish in the world. These massive fish have sharp teeth and thick scales that serve as armor. While they might look intimidating, they’re rarely a threat to humans. Gars are an impressive species of fish because they’ve kept many of their ancient characteristics, such as breathing water and air.

32. Alligator Snapping Turtle

Alligator snapping turtle covering in moss
  • Scientific Name: Macrochelys temminckii
  • Habitat: Freshwater areas in the United States
  • Size: 155 to 175 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, amphibians, carrion

If you come across an alligator snapping turtle, you might mistake it for a rock at first. These massive turtles stay completely still and lure prey toward them with their worm-like tongues. Alligator snapping turtles are the biggest freshwater turtle species in North America, and they will eat almost anything they’re able to catch.

33. Allis Shad

Allis Shad fish
  • Scientific Name: Alosa alosa
  • Habitat: Eastern Atlantic waters near Europe and Africa
  • Size: About 30 inches and 8 pounds
  • Diet: Insect larvae, zooplankton, small shrimp

These fish regularly live in saltwater, but they need to migrate to freshwater to breed. They’re most closely related to the twait shad. Unfortunately, it’s rare to find an allis shad in the water today. Pollution, overfishing, and habitat destruction has caused the population to dwindle.

34. Alpine Accentor

Alpine accentor sitting on rock
  • Scientific Name: Prunella collaris
  • Habitat: Mountain areas of Europe and Asia
  • Size: 0.9 to 1.2 ounces
  • Diet: Insects, seeds, berries

These tiny birds live in areas with little vegetation, where they build their nests low to the ground in rock crevices. The name “accentor” comes from Latin, and it means “person who sings with another.” Thus, these birds regularly chirp in unison.

35. Alpine Goat

Alpine goats grazing in meadow
  • Scientific Name: Capra aegagrus hircus
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 135 to 175 pounds
  • Diet: Grass, vegetation

Alpine goats are a domesticated species, so they have a friendlier personality than most wild goats. This is the most common goat breed used for dairy, so most dairy products made with goat milk come from this species. They thrive best in cold climates, especially if there are mountains for them to climb.

36. Alpine Ibex

Alpine Ibex laying down
  • Scientific Name: Capra ibex
  • Habitat: Alpine ranges of Europe
  • Size: About 150 pounds
  • Diet: Grass, flowers, bushes

This ibex species usually lives in groups of 10 to 20. They can climb higher than most animals, which allows them to escape predators. If they feel threatened, they will point their massive horns toward predators to defend themselves. They’re most commonly seen in rocky habitats with elevations of 6,500 to 12,000 feet.

37. Alpine Salamander

Alpine salamander sitting on rock
  • Scientific Name: Salamandra atra
  • Habitat: Forests of the Alpine range
  • Size: 4.5 to 6.3 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, spiders, slugs

Alpine salamanders are solid black amphibians that live in high elevations of the Alps. They are a poisonous species that can release dangerous secretions from their skin when threatened. Poison glands can be present on the sides of their bodies and tails.

38. Altum Angelfish

Altum Angelfish swimming among algae
  • Scientific Name: Pterophyllum altum
  • Habitat: South American rivers
  • Size: 9 to 13 inches tall, about 7 inches long
  • Diet: Brine shrimp, worms, insects

The Altum angelfish is a beautiful species that has vertical stripes on its body and two long fins that trail behind it when it swims. These fish are often kept in captivity, but they need a large aquarium to accommodate their growth and care. They are more peaceful than other angelfish species, but they can still become territorial as they age.

39. Amazon River Dolphin

Amazon River Dolphin hunting
  • Scientific Name: Inia geoffrensis
  • Habitat: Madeira River, Amazon River, and Orinoco River
  • Size: 220 to 440 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, prawns, frogs

The Amazon river dolphin is also known as the pink river dolphin because of its distinct pink skin. They’re considered the biggest and smartest creatures in the dolphin species. They’re unique from ocean-dwelling dolphins because they have a hump on their backs instead of a dorsal fin.

40. Amazonian Manatee

Amazonian Manatee at surface
  • Scientific Name: Trichechus inunguis
  • Habitat: Fresh water of northern South America
  • Size: About 920 pounds
  • Diet: Grass, water lettuce, hyacinth

This manatee species is native to the Amazon Basin, which runs through countries like Brazil, Peru, Bolivia, Columbia, Ecuador, and Venezuela. Despite weighing around 900 pounds, this is the smallest manatee species. They can be distinguished by having smoother skin and less nails on their flippers.

41. American Alligator

American Alligator with mouth open
  • Scientific Name: Alligator mississippiensis
  • Habitat: Freshwater areas of southeastern United States
  • Size: Up to 1,000 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, frogs, birds, mammals

American alligators live in warm climates of the southeastern United States, and they can be found in any body of freshwater. They can swim, walk, run, or crawl, making it easy for them to catch a wide range of prey. Female alligators can lay up to 90 eggs at a time, but the eggs and young are often targeted by predators. Adult alligators can live up to 50 years.

42. American Anglerfish

American Anglerfish hidden
  • Scientific Name: Lophius americanus
  • Habitat: Western Atlantic Ocean
  • Size: About 27 pounds and 39 inches
  • Diet: Fish

This species of anglerfish hunt by ambushing prey. It will rest on the seabed beneath sediment, staying perfectly still as it waits for fish to swim by. American anglerfish fish usually “walk” slowly along the ground rather than swimming. If not hunted by humans, these fish can live up to 30 years and become 50 pounds, but it’s rare.

43. American Avocet

American Avocet searching water
  • Scientific Name: Recurvirostra americana
  • Habitat: Shallow wetlands of North America
  • Size: About 12 ounces
  • Diet: Insects, crustaceans, small fish

The American avocet is a skinny bird that hangs out along the shore of a body of water. As the water passes, these birds use their upturned bills to search the water for aquatic invertebrates. Their heads are rust-colored while their bodies are black and white.

44. American Badger

American Badger laying in dirt
  • Scientific Name: Taxidea taxus
  • Habitat: Open grasslands and fields of North America
  • Size: 14 to 16 pounds
  • Diet: Birds, small mammals, insects

Badgers spend most of their time alone, and they’re most active at night. They have strong front legs to allow them to dig tunnels to protect themselves. By hunting, these mammals help control the rodent population. They’re not afraid to fight back if threatened, so they may hiss, growl, scratch, or bite if they sense danger.

45. American Black Bear

American Black Bear at National Park
  • Scientific Name: Ursus americanus
  • Habitat: Deciduous forests of North America
  • Size: 90 to 600 pounds
  • Diet: Roots, berries, fish, mammals, insects

Black bears are opportunistic eaters, so they consume a wide range of both plants and animals. What they eat greatly varies depending on the season and where they’re located. Even though males can weigh over 600 pounds, this breed is considered the smallest bear species in North America. They’re also the most common bears on the continent.

46. American Bulldog

American Bulldog sitting outside
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 60 to 130 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

American Bulldogs are much bigger and more active than English Bulldogs or French Bulldogs. They were bred as working dogs to scare off predators on farms and ranches. Thus, they’re incredibly agile dogs, and they can jump up to 6 feet off the ground!

47. American Bullfrog

American Bullfrog jumping
  • Scientific Name: Lithobates catesbeianus
  • Habitat: Lakes, ponds, and swamps of North America
  • Size: About 2 pounds and 8 inches
  • Diet: Worms, insects, small fish

American bullfrogs are massive amphibians that can leap up to 6 feet, which is about ten times their length! These frogs let out deep croaking sounds when attracting mates or defending their territories. They will ambush and consume any prey that will fit in their mouths. A group of these frogs is called an army.

48. American Cocker Spaniel

Well-groomed American Cocker Spaniel
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 15 to 31 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

Cocker Spaniels are part of the sporting dog group, but they’re also commonly known for their beautiful appearance. These curly-coated pups are affectionate and playful, so they make great family pets. However, their coats can easily get matted, so they require more brushing than other sporting dog breeds.

49. American Cockroach

American cockroach on concrete
  • Scientific Name: Periplaneta americana
  • Habitat: Across the United States and Africa
  • Size: 1.1 to 2.1 inches long
  • Diet: Any organic food source or decaying matter

Most people would scream if they found one of these critters in their home. These large insects can run 3.4 miles per hour, which is comparable to a human running 210 mph. That’s how they quickly scamper away when the lights come on. Each of their eyes have 3,500 lenses, but their sight is much more sensitive to light than ours.

50. American Dog Tick

American dog tick on leaf
  • Scientific Name: Dermacentor variabilis
  • Habitat: Across North America
  • Size: 3 to 15 millimeters long
  • Diet: Blood

Most people call this pest the “wood tick,” as it commonly clings to humans and animals in wooded areas. A female dog tick can produce over 4,000 eggs at a time. In early stages, the tick larvae only have six legs, but they develop eight legs by the time they’re full-grown.

51. American English Coonhound

American English Coonhound laying in grass
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 40 to 65 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

This dog breed has been around since the 19th century. They were bred as hunting dogs to help track down raccoons, hence the breed’s name. Despite being high-energy dogs, they also have a laid-back side and enjoy relaxing with their humans.

52. American Eskimo Dog

Happy American Eskimo Dog
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 18 to 35 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

This small, fluffy breed was bred from a German Spitz in the 19th century. It’s a highly intelligent breed, so these dogs often performed in circuses and other shows back in the day. They can be social, friendly dogs for any family, as long as their humans are willing to dedicate lots of time to training and bonding.

53. American Foxhound

American Foxhound by person's feet
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 44 to 75 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

American Foxhounds are colored like Beagles, but they have tall, bony structures. Their stature gives them lots of agility and energy. They have a great sense of smell, so they love going on adventures. However, they’re not suitable for apartment living because they bark a lot.

54. American Hairless Terrier

American Hairless Terrier relaxing
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 12 to 16 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

Despite being called a “hairless terrier,” this dog breed comes in two types: one with a coat and one hairless. The hairless varieties are the most well-known, and they’re popular for families with dog allergies. American Hairless Terriers are friendly, energetic dogs, but their skin is very sensitive. So, they need extra protection from the sun and extremely cold temperatures.

55. American Oystercatcher

American Oystercatcher holding prey
  • Scientific Name: Haematopus palliatus
  • Habitat: Beaches of North America
  • Size: About 1.2 pounds
  • Diet: Mollusks

These birds spend their time searching the sandy shores with their long orange beaks. They search the sand for food, which consists of any mollusks. During high tides, they head to their roosts. When these birds mate or protect their territories, they let out loud, aggressive sounds that are impossible to miss.

56. American Pit Bull Terrier

American Pit Bull Terrier by flowers
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 30 to 60 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

Even though this breed isn’t recognized by the American Kennel Club, these dogs are one of the most common breeds labeled as “Pit Bulls.” Many people mistake them for being aggressive, but they’re normally sweet, silly dogs. They were bred to facilitate bull baiting before it was banned for being inhumane.

57. American Pygmy Goat

American Pygmy Goat Close-up
  • Scientific Name: Capra aegagrus hircus
  • Habitat: Domesticated, mostly in the United States
  • Size: 30 to 90 pounds
  • Diet: Plants and grains

These goats are about as big as a medium-sized dog. Unlike other goats, both females and males have horns, so you cannot tell their sex that way. They’re curious, friendly creatures that love climbing and jumping. They’re a dwarf goat breed, not a teacup one.

58. American Robin

American Robin on perch
  • Scientific Name: Turdus migratorius
  • Habitat: All across North America
  • Size: 2.7 ounces
  • Diet: Insects, worms, berries

Robins are regularly seen in yards across North America, and they migrate to warmer areas of the continent in the winter. These small birds travel with many of their kind, and roosts can have as many as 250,000 birds in them. Females can produce three broods per year, but only about 40% of robin nests have surviving young.

59. American Staffordshire Terrier

American Staffordshire Terriers laying in grass
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 40 to 70 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

The American Staffordshire Terrier is another “Pit Bull” breed, but like the American Pit Bull Terrier, they’re as sweet as can be! They might look like guard dogs, but they’re too friendly with humans to provide adequate protection. Instead, they’re best for active families that love to play.

60. American Toad

American toad in nature
  • Scientific Name: Anaxyrus americanus
  • Habitat: Moist areas of North America
  • Size: 50 to 90 millimeters long
  • Diet: Aquatic vegetation, algae, insects, worms

When threatened, these amphibians can release a poisonous liquid that’s dangerous to other animals. Yet, the milky substance is only mildly toxic, so animals will get sick, but not die. The toads may also play dead to avoid being hunted. They can lay up to 20,000 eggs at a time along water edges, and the eggs only take a week to hatch.

61. American Tree Sparrow

American Tree Sparrow and pine needles
  • Scientific Name: Spizelloides arborea
  • Habitat: Across Canada and northern United States
  • Size: 0.03 to 0.05 pounds
  • Diet: Seeds, grass, berries, insects

Despite being so small, American tree sparrows need to consume about 30% of their body weight each day. If they don’t eat one day, they will likely die. They usually try to make their eggs hatch around the same time so the chicks can forage together. This is a behavior that many songbirds have.

62. American Water Spaniel

American Water Spaniel resting
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 25 to 45 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

As the name implies, this dog breed was bred to retrieve waterfowl for hunters. They have a waterproof outer coat to keep their bodies warm when swimming in cold water. Then, their undercoat fur sheds seasonally. These dogs also have webbed feet to help them swim quickly to capture prey.

63. Amur Leopard

Amur Leopard laying down
  • Scientific Name: Panthera pardus orientalis
  • Habitat: Forests in Russia
  • Size: 55 to 106 pounds
  • Diet: Small mammals, deer, cattle

The Amur leopard has unique qualities that allow it to survive in Russia’s far east. Their coats grow significantly in colder months to protect them from temperatures that surpass -20 degrees Fahrenheit. They’re considered the rarest big cat in the world with less than 100 in the wild. Their small population is due to poaching and habitat loss.

64. Anatolian Shepherd

Anatolian Shepherd sitting in road
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 90 to 150 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

Despite having “shepherd” in the name, these dogs were initially bred as livestock guardians. Their bravery and large stature allowed them to scare off coyotes, bears, and even wolves. They can be incredibly loyal toward their family, but they are independent and wary of strangers. So, they’re not ideal for first-time dog owners.

65. Andean Condor

Andean Condor flying
  • Scientific Name: Vultur gryphus
  • Habitat: Near the Andes Mountains
  • Size: 17 to 33 pounds, 3 to 4.5 feet tall
  • Diet: Carrion

Andean condors have the longest wingspan of all raptors, reaching up to 10.5 feet. Unlike most vultures, these birds have distinct differences between males and females. Male condors have large combs on their heads while females do not. They are mostly carrion eaters, so they seek out animals that are already dead. If they can’t find carrion, they may capture newborn animals, such as cows and goats.

66. Angora Ferret

Fluffy angora ferrets
  • Scientific Name: Mustela furo
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 1.5 to 4.5 pounds, 18 to 21 inches long
  • Diet: Domestic ferret food

Angora ferrets are a type of ferret that’s regularly kept as a pet. However, this breed was created by mistake. About 30 years ago, a breeder produced a litter with legs that had more fur than other ferrets. Those ferrets eventually evolved into this fluffy species. These ferrets were initially bred for their fur but soon became beloved pets.

67. Angora Goat

Shaggy Angora Goat
  • Scientific Name: Capra aegagrus hircus
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 180 to 220 pounds
  • Diet: Hay, shrubs, leaves

Angora goats are kept in captivity worldwide because they produce mohair, known as one of the warmest fibers. These goats grow about one inch of hair per month, so they only need to be shaved twice each year. They may look more like sheep than goats, but they’re not a relative of sheep.

68. Angora Rabbit

Fluffy Angora Rabbit Eating
  • Scientific Name: Oryctolagus cuniculus
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 7 to 11.5 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic rabbit feed

Angora rabbits are distinguished by their thick coats of fur. Each rabbit can produce between 2.5 to 4.5 pounds of wool per year, which is used for all types of winter clothing. They are one of the oldest domestic rabbit breeds, and they originated from the same region of Turkey as Angora goats and ferrets.

69. Anhinga

Anhinga stretching wings
  • Scientific Name: Anhinga anhinga
  • Habitat: Shallow waters in North and South America
  • Size: About 2.5 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, crustaceans, invertebrates

Anhingas have long, snake-like necks, which stick out of the water when they swim with their bodies submerged. They’re commonly seen drying themselves on the shore after with their wings stretched out. Some other names for this species are “snakebird,” “darter,” and “water turkey.”

70. Aquatic Warbler

Aquatic Warbler in plants
  • Scientific Name: Acrocephalus paludicola
  • Habitat: Meadows in Europe and Africa
  • Size: 0.02 to 0.03 pounds
  • Diet: Insects, berries

The aquatic warbler is a rare bird species that breeds in Europe and migrates to Africa. They lay their eggs in low vegetation areas in wetlands. However, due to the draining of wetlands, these tiny birds have struggled to survive amid habitat loss. It’s suspected that there are no more than 15,000 pairs left on the planet.

71. Arafura File Snake

Arafura File Snake underwater
  • Scientific Name: Acrochordus arafurae
  • Habitat: Aquatic freshwater areas of Australia
  • Size: Up to 5 feet long
  • Diet: Fish

The Arafura file snake is a non-venomous snake that lives in freshwater. Due to its large grey body, it’s sometimes called an “elephant trunk snake.” However, its common name is because of its rough skin, which is similar to a nail file. These snakes only eat once a month, and they reproduce every 8 to 10 years, so rarely more than once in a lifetime.

72. Arapaima

Two arapaima swimming
  • Scientific Name: Arapaima gigas
  • Habitat: The Amazon River basin floodplain
  • Size: 7 to 15 feet long and 200 – 400 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, fruit, insects, birds

This species is known as the largest fish in the world with some reaching up to 440 pounds. This unique fish is capable of breathing air and water, and it can survive out of water for up to 24 hours. These fish aren’t picky with their meals. When they’re hungry, they’ll open their mouths and suck up nearby critters like a vacuum.

73. Arctic Fox

Arctic Fox in snow
  • Scientific Name: Vulpes lagopus
  • Habitat: Any polar forest regions
  • Size: 3 to 21 pounds
  • Diet: Small mammals, insects, berries

Arctic foxes have dense coats to help them survive frigid temperatures. Their fur changes colors depending on the season to help them stay hidden. Their fur is usually white in the winter to match the snow and brown in the summer to match the dirt. These foxes are fast, so they can travel 96 miles a day and run up to 31 miles per hour.

74. Arctic Hare

Arctic Hare bouncing
  • Scientific Name: Lepus Arcticus
  • Habitat: Snowy, rocky areas of Canada
  • Size: 9 to 12 pounds
  • Diet: Grass, flowers

Like arctic foxes, arctic hares also change colors to adapt to their surroundings. They usually have brown/gray coats, but in the winter, their fur will appear much whiter to help them blend in with the snow. Despite being herbivores, these critters have been known to eat meat if necessary. When they hop, they use their hind legs to propel them, similar to how a kangaroo moves.

75. Arctic Wolf

Arctic wolf in snow
  • Scientific Name: Canus Lupus Arcticus
  • Habitat: Tundra forests of Canada
  • Size: 55 to 88 pounds
  • Diet: Deer, elk, moose

Arctic wolves have unique layered coats of fur. The upper layer of fur gets thicker as the weather gets colder. Then, the undercoat is waterproof to keep the wolf’s skin dry and warm. This species travels in packs of about six canines so they can take down large mammals. When wolf pups are born, their eyes are blue, but they turn gold as the pups age.

76. Argentine Anchovy

Pile of anchovies
  • Scientific Name: Engraulis anchoita
  • Habitat: Waters of Argentina, Uruguay, and Brazil
  • Size: 7 to 13 centimeters long
  • Diet: Plankton

Anchovies are a small fish species that’s commonly eaten by humans. This particular species is silver with a brown tint to it. Not all anchovies taste the same because the freshest ones have black irises as opposed to reddish-brown ones. Argentine anchovies travel in schools about 30 to 90 meters below the water’s surface.

77. Argentine Ant

Argentine ant on leaf
  • Scientific Name: Linepithema humile
  • Habitat: Soil, wood, logs in northern South America
  • Size: 2.6 to 3.2 millimeters long
  • Diet: Human food, dead animals, feces

Argentine ants are pests that will eat just about anything they can. They prefer sweets above all else. They live in massive colonies that usually have more than one queen. While these insects are small, they are aggressive and can easily overpower larger ant species with their strong jaws.

78. Arizona Bark Scorpion

Arizona Bark Scorpion on wood
  • Scientific Name: Centruroides sculpturatus
  • Habitat: Deserts of Mexico and Southwestern United States
  • Size: 7 to 8 centimeters long
  • Diet: Insects, spiders, centipedes

The sting of an Arizona bark scorpion could be deadly to humans. Yet, if you hold up a UV light, these critters will glow blue or green, making them easy to spot. The gestation period of these scorpions is nine months, just like a human’s. They have about 30 young scorpions in each litter.

79. Arizona Black Rattlesnake

Arizona Black Rattlesnake tongue out
  • Scientific Name: Crotalus cerberus
  • Habitat: Woodlands of Southeastern United States
  • Size: 2 to 4 feet long
  • Diet: Small mammals, lizards, amphibians, birds

Juveniles of this species are often brightly colored, but as adults, they become dark brown or black. However, their scale colors may change slightly based on their mood. They’re social snakes, so they’re often seen in communities with several others of their kind. These rattlesnakes are dangerous and can inject venom deep into skin if provoked.

80. Armadillo Lizard

Armadillo lizard on rock
  • Scientific Name: Cordylus cataphractus
  • Habitat: Desert areas of South Africa’s western coast
  • Size: 8 to 17 pounds
  • Diet: Insects, spiders, plants

The armadillo lizard gets its name because when threatened, it can roll into a ball and protect itself using the spines on its tail. These critters hide in rock crevices, and they can be found in groups of up to 60 lizards! Experienced reptile keepers sometimes have these lizards as pets.

81. Asian Arowana

Asian Arowana Swimming
  • Scientific Name: Scleropages formosus
  • Habitat: Rivers, swamps, and wetlands of Southeast Asia
  • Size: About 36 inches long and 15 pounds
  • Diet: Insects, invertebrates, small fish, frogs

Asian arowanas have adapted to survive in freshwater, so they can no longer live in saltwater at all. These long fish come in many distinct colors, such as green, gold, and red. They reach sexual maturity later than most fish, and produce less eggs, making them an endangered species. Asian cultures consider these fish a sign of good luck because they resemble the Chinese dragon.

82. Asian Cockroach

Asian cockroach on toothbrush
  • Scientific Name: Blattella asahinai
  • Habitat: All across North America and Japan
  • Size: 0.5 to 0.75 inches long
  • Diet: Decaying plants and animals

Asian cockroaches originated in Japan, but now they’re just as common in North America. They can survive in almost any environment because they’re not picky about their food. They’ll eat almost anything they come across, even feces. They’re only active at night, which is how they protect themselves from getting hunted.

83. Asian Elephant

Asian elephant taking a bath
  • Scientific Name: Elephas maximus
  • Habitat: Rainforests of Southern Asia
  • Size: 6,500 to 11,000 pounds
  • Diet: Grass, fruit, roots

Asian elephants are slightly smaller than their African cousins. However, they’re still massive, intelligent creatures. An Asian elephant has about 1,000 muscles in its trunk, which is how it can pick up items with it. They’re social animals that are believed to show advanced emotions like grief and compassion.

84. Asian Giant Hornet

Asian giant hornet on tree bark
  • Scientific Name: Vespa mandarinia
  • Habitat: Dense woodlands of Southern Asia
  • Size: 1.1 to 2.2 inches long
  • Diet: Insects

Asian giant hornets are another massive insect that’s known for aggressive tendencies like killer bees. These hornets are known as “murder hornets” because they hunt down similar species like bees and wasps for prey. They can kill over 40 bees in a minute by decapitating them. Their stings are very painful to humans, but they can’t kill you unless you’re allergic.

85. Asian Ladybeetle

Asian Ladybeetle on leaf
  • Scientific Name: Harmonia axyridis
  • Habitat: All across Asia and North America
  • Size: About 7 millimeters long
  • Diet: Pollen, mildew, nectar, aphids

Asian ladybeetles, more commonly known as ladybugs, infest homes all over the world. They rarely injure humans, but it can be difficult to get rid of them. They’re rarely hunted by predators because they can release a foul fluid from their legs when threatened. They’re most commonly associated with the color red, but their exterior can be a range of colors, including tan and orange.

86. Asian Palm Civet

Asian Palm Civet on branch
  • Scientific Name: Paradoxurus hermaphroditus
  • Habitat: Tropical rainforests of Southern Asia
  • Size: 3 to 10 pounds
  • Diet: Rodents, frogs, snakes

Asian palm civets share similar behaviors to wild cats, such as the way they stalk prey and climb trees. While they have a carnivorous diet, they will eat fruits if they need to. They’re a highly adaptable species that can live at a variety of altitudes, which helps them survive deforestation. They are solitary creatures, but can easily recognize other civets based on scent glands.

87. Asiatic Black Bear

Asiatic Black Bear outdoors
  • Scientific Name: Ursus tibetanus
  • Habitat: Tropical forests across Asia
  • Size: 198 to 253 pounds
  • Diet: Nuts, fruits, insects, small mammals

Despite looking like tough predators, these bears eat nuts and fruits just as much as they consume meat. They spend most of their time foraging alone, and they only spend time with other bears when mating or defending territory. They can build nests in trees so they can stay up there to forage more.

88. Asp

Asp snake curled up
  • Scientific Name: Vipera aspis
  • Habitat: Swiss Alps
  • Size: 2 to 3 feet long
  • Diet: Rodents, birds, lizards

The asp is a poisonous snake that was a symbol of royalty in Egypt even though they’re native to Europe. During Greco-Roman times, these reptiles were used to bite prisoners as a way to execute them. This snake’s fangs are sharp but hollow, and each fang can rotate independently. Asps are one of the few viper species that are active during the day rather than at night.

89. Atlantic Puffin

Atlantic Puffins on rock
  • Scientific Name: Fratercula arctica
  • Habitat: Northern open ocean
  • Size: About 1 pound
  • Diet: Small fish

The Atlantic puffin, also known as the common puffin, is a member of the auk family. These small penguin-like creatures swim underwater while foraging for food. They can dive to reach about 200 feet beneath the surface. Most puffins only lay one or two eggs, and they care for their young for about 40 days after they hatch. Then, the chick flies out to sea on its own.

90. Atlas Beetle

Atlas beetle on stump
  • Scientific Name: Chalcosoma atlas
  • Habitat: Forests of Malaysia
  • Size: 0.98 to 4.7 inches long
  • Diet: Compost, decaying wood, fruit

Atlas beetles are massive critters that can be as big as the palm of a human hand. They’re an aggressive species, and the males have a horn that’s almost a third of their body length. During mating season, males will use their horns to knock over other males as a display of dominance. Even the larvae can be aggressive and will likely bite if touched.

91. Australian Brushturkey

Australian Brushturkey in forest
  • Scientific Name: Alectura lathami
  • Habitat: Wetlands and woodlands near Australian coasts
  • Size: 4 to 5 pounds
  • Diet: Insects, fruit, seeds

It’s hard to miss these birds due to their bright red and yellow heads. Before the females lay eggs, one dominant male creates a large nest on the ground made of compostable materials like leaves. The dominant male will fight off other males until one eventually defeats him and takes over his role.

92. Australian Cattle Dog

Australian Cattle Dog running
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 31 to 35 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

Australian Cattle Dogs, also called Blue Heelers, are known for their energetic, playful attitudes. They were first bred as herding dogs in Australia in the 1800s. Australian settlers bred them to herd cattle, so these dogs still need an excess of exercise in a home environment.

93. Australian Green Tree Frog

Australian Green Tree Frog on leaf
  • Scientific Name: Litoria caerulea
  • Habitat: Tropical forests of Northern Australia
  • Size: 3 to 4.5 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, spiders, small lizards

Australian green tree frogs, also known as White’s tree frogs, are found in the wild, but are also commonly kept as pets. Even though they have lungs, they gain a lot of oxygen when absorbing water through their skin. So, they need to stay moist at all times. They’re docile frogs that only hunt at night. They’ll eat just about anything they can find, but they’re often clumsy when pouncing at prey.

94. Australian Kelpie

Alert Australian Kelpie
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 31 to 46 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

Like Australian Cattle Dogs, these canines were bred in Australia as a herding dog breed. However, Kelpies were primarily used to herd large flocks of sheep. Many Kelpies today are still used as herding dogs or show dogs because their high energy can be a lot for the average family to handle.

95. Australian King Parrot

Australian King Parrot on branch
  • Scientific Name: Alisterus scapularis
  • Habitat: Across eastern Australian coasts
  • Size: About 8.2 ounces
  • Diet: Fruits, nuts, flowers

Australian king parrots have beautiful red, green, and blue feathers. However, if the birds don’t have enough melanin in their bodies, their red feathers will appear orange or yellow instead. They spend most of their time flying below tree level, but if a person spooks them, they will screech before flying away.

96. Australian Mist

Australian Mist cat on stool
  • Scientific Name: Felis catus
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 8 to 15 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic cat food

Australian Mists look like the average house cat, but they’re actually a mix between Burmese, Abyssinian, and Moggy breeds. They’re a cat breed that loves attention, so they’re great for humans that like to snuggle. They’re even patient around children.

97. Australian Shepherd

Australian Shepherd by tree
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 35 to 65 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

Australian Shepherds are a herding breed, so they have high energy no matter where they live. They often have stunning blue eyes and merle coats. Despite their name, these dogs didn’t originate in Australia. Instead, they came from the Basque region of Spain. They were brought to Australia before America, which is why Americans called them Australian Shepherds.

98. Australian Terrier

Australian Terrier outside
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 12 to 16 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

Australian Terriers are small, low-shedding dogs that resemble medium-sized Yorkies. Yet, they were initially bred to protect livestock. They’re smart and spirited, so they can protect their territory from snakes, rats, foxes, mice, and other pests.

99. Axolotl

axolotl in aquarium
  • Scientific Name: Ambystoma mexicanum
  • Habitat: Lake Xochimilco, Mexico
  • Size: About 10.5 ounces, up to 12 inches long
  • Diet: Worms, mollusks, insect eggs

An axolotl is a type of salamander that never grows out of its aquatic stage. These intriguing critters breathe underwater through the frilly gills on the sides of their heads. Like most amphibians, they can regenerate body parts that they lose, including toes, spines, and even brains!

100. Aye Aye

Aye Aye close-up
  • Scientific Name: Daubentonia madagascariensis
  • Habitat: Rainforests of Madagascar
  • Size: 4 to 6 pounds
  • Diet: Insects, fruit, larvae

The aye aye is a lemur species native only to the island of Madagascar. They were thought to be extinct until 1957, and they are still endangered today due to loss of habitat. Aye ayes spend most of their time in the trees with few natural predators, but local people used to kill them, believing they were bad luck.

101. Azara’s Agouti

Azara's Agouti
  • Scientific Name: Dasyprocta azarae
  • Habitat: Burrows in South America
  • Size: About 6.6 pounds
  • Diet: Nuts, fruits, vegetation

This agouti species is vulnerable, and no one knows exactly how many are left. They’re native to Brazil, Paraguay, and Argentina. They’re a difficult species to study because they are incredibly shy and solitary. If bred in captivity, they can be trusting of people, but in the wild, they’re regularly hunted by humans and other carnivorous creatures.

So Many Wonderful Animals!

These animals are only the ones that start with the letter A, so imagine how many species fall under other letters of the alphabet! Some of these critters may be familiar to you while others might be new and exciting. There’s no limit to the information you can learn about the amazing creatures on our planet.