102 Animals That Start with G

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

The world is filled with more animals than any one person can name, and there’s always more to learn about every species. It’s crazy to think that our planet has such a wide variety of creatures, from the smallest ants to the largest whales.

In this article, we’re going to focus on animals that start with the letter G. Even one letter of the alphabet holds more species than we can imagine.

List of Animals That Start with G

Here are 102 animal species that start with the letter G.

1. Gaboon Viper

Gaboon viper face
  • Scientific Name: Bitis gabonica
  • Habitat: Rainforests of central and southern Africa
  • Size: 4 to 7 feet long, 20 to 45 pounds
  • Diet: Mammals, birds, amphibians

Gaboon vipers are the largest vipers in Africa and one of the largest venomous snakes in the world. These snakes deliver a lot of venom in one bite because they don’t let go easily. However, bites are rare because these reptiles are laidback. They usually hiss and flatten their bodies as a warning before biting. While they usually seek out small animals as prey, they’ve been known to eat mammals the size of toy poodles before.

2. Gadwall

Gadwall bird swimming
  • Scientific Name: Mareca strepera
  • Habitat: Near small bodies of water across North America
  • Size: 18 to 22 inches long
  • Diet: Aquatic plants, seeds, aquatic invertebrates

Flocks of gadwalls usually forage near other birds, and if the opportunity arises, they will steal food from those birds. They rarely dive, but instead, they float on the surface and graze on food in shallow water. They mostly feed on plants, but during stressful times, such as mating season or preparing for winter, they will eat more invertebrates to gather extra protein. Gadwalls mate for life, so they will return to the same partner each year.

3. Galah

Closeup of pink Galah bird
  • Scientific Name: Eolophus roseicapilla
  • Habitat: Across Australia and Tasmania
  • Size: 13 to 15 inches long
  • Diet: Seeds, nuts, fruit, roots

Galahs are playful birds from the cockatoo family. Their name loosely means “loud-mouthed fool” in Australian English because these birds are consistently loud. When flying in flocks, they make high-pitched screeches. You can distinguish males from females by looking at their eyes. Males have dark brown or black eyes while female eyes are red or light brown. Galahs can be kept as pets, but they’re high-maintenance birds that can live for up to 72 years.

4. Galapagos Bullhead Shark

Galapagos Bullhead Shark on ocean floor
  • Scientific Name: Heterodontus quoyi
  • Habitat: Shallow tropical waters near the Galapagos Islands and northern Peru
  • Size: Up to 3.5 feet long
  • Diet: Squid, octopus, crab, fish

Galapagos bullhead sharks are bottom-dwelling fish that live at depths of 10 to 100 feet below the surface. At night, they hunt a variety of small creatures, and if needed, they will crush the hard exterior of prey to get to the inside. They lay durable eggs that they shove into rock crevices for safety. These sharks are harmless to humans, and they will usually lay completely still when scuba divers pass.

5. Galapagos Hawk

Galapagos Hawk in plants
  • Scientific Name: Buteo galapagoensis
  • Habitat: Across the Galapagos Islands
  • Size: 18 to 23 inches long, 46 to 55 inch wingspan
  • Diet: Locusts, centipedes, birds, rodents, lizards

Galapagos hawks are not picky about their habitat, so they can live in all types of environments on the Galapagos Islands. These birds don’t have a specific breeding season because the climate on the islands is consistent year-round. They aren’t afraid to hunt a variety of animals, but they will flee and even abandon their nest if a human approaches. Their nests are massive and can be up to four feet wide.

6. Galapagos Penguin

Galapagos penguin standing on rock
  • Scientific Name: Spheniscus Mendiculus
  • Habitat: Near water on the Galapagos Islands
  • Size: 4.5 to 9 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, shrimp, krill

Galapagos penguins are found further north than any other penguin species. Yet, even on the Galapagos Islands, they’re a rare sighting because they’re endangered. These penguins have adapted to swim quickly in the water, but they’re clumsy when moving on land. Since they’re more vulnerable on land, they travel in large colonies and squawk to communicate with each other. Unlike other penguin species, these birds live in warm climates that can reach 80 degrees Fahrenheit.

7. Galapagos Tortoise

Galapagos tortoise walking
  • Scientific Name: Chelonoidis nigra
  • Habitat: Dry lowlands of the Galapagos Islands
  • Size: 440 to 660 pounds
  • Diet: Grass, fruit, cacti

These are the largest tortoises in the world, and they’ve been around for millions of years. The shell of the Galapagos tortoise is made of a honeycomb-like structure, so it’s not quite as solid as it appears. However, these reptiles are still some of the heaviest tortoises in the wild. They rarely swim, but scientists believe they can float in the water to reduce the risk of drowning. Galapagos tortoises have beneficial relationships with some of the birds on the island because they eat parasites off the tortoise shells.

8. Gambian Sun Squirrel

Gambian sun squirrel perched in tree
  • Scientific Name: Heliosciurus gambianus
  • Habitat: Wooded savannas and grasslands across Africa
  • Size: 6.7 to 9.4 inch body length
  • Diet: Plants, nuts, seeds

Gambian sun squirrels have tails that are almost twice the length of their bodies. Their tails will flick if they sense danger, and they may let out a high-pitched squeak to alert other squirrels. They can adapt to live in areas near humans, so their population is thriving even though their natural habitats are decreasing. They may hang out in family groups, but these rodents are usually solitary.

9. Gargoyle Gecko

Gargoyle gecko on tree branch
  • Scientific Name: Rhacodactylus auriculatus
  • Habitat: Tropical rainforests of New Caledonia
  • Size: 7 to 9 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, flowers, small lizards

In the wild, deforestation is causing this species to decline drastically. So, that’s one of the reasons they’re becoming more common in captivity. They have bumps on their heads that resemble the horns of a gargoyle. They also blend into wood the way a gargoyle would match stone. They can use their tails to grab onto branches, but they can also drop and regrow their tails if they feel threatened. Like most geckos, these reptiles are most active at night.

10. Garibaldi Damselfish

Garibaldi damselfish swimming
  • Scientific Name: Hypsypops rubicundus
  • Habitat: Northeastern subtropical areas of the Pacific Ocean
  • Size: 12 to 14 inches long
  • Diet: Bottom-dwelling invertebrates

This fish species is named after Italian revolutionary Giuseppe Garibaldi because he was known for wearing a bright red shirt. Yet, young Garibaldis are the only ones with red bodies because the adults appear more orange. People love photographing this vibrantly-colored fish, but Garibaldis can be aggressive if you get too close. They will attack humans and large sea creatures if they come near their nests.

11. Gaur

Gaur face close-up
  • Scientific Name: Bos gaurus
  • Habitat: Grasslands and forests of southern Asia
  • Size: 1550 to 3300 pounds
  • Diet: Leaves, stems, flowers, seeds

The gaur, also known as the Indian bison, is the largest species of wild cattle. These mammals can be dangerous, charging up to 35 miles per hour with their sharp horns. They’re territorial animals, so each group of gaur needs a space of up to 30 square miles. Their sharp, curved horns can grow up to 45 inches long. Even if they’re unprovoked, they might attack humans or animals using their horns.

12. Gee’s Golden Langur

Gee's golden langur in tree
  • Scientific Name: Trachypithecus geei
  • Habitat: Tropical moist forests of Assam, India and part of Bhutan
  • Size: 18 to 24 pounds
  • Diet: Fruit, leaves, seeds, flowers

These primates spend most of their time in the canopy of trees. They like to be near about eight other Gee’s golden langurs, and all the langurs in one group will groom each other to form a closer bond. Whenever a baby langur is born, the mother and all the other females in the group will dedicate their time to caring for it. They forage among the trees early in the morning, and they will favor fruits even if they’re not ripe.

13. Gelada Baboon

Gelada baboon hair blowing in wind
  • Scientific Name: Theropithecus gelada
  • Habitat: Mountain meadows of Ethiopia
  • Size: 24 to 41 pounds
  • Diet: Leaves, grass, fruit, invertebrates

Despite having large canine teeth, geladas feed mostly on grass. They spend most of their days pulling grass out of the ground with their hands. They expose their sharp teeth to show aggression toward other animals. These primates aren’t good climbers, so they spend most of their time on the ground. When they’re ready to mate, female geladas have a bright red chest patch to help males locate them.

14. Gemsbok

Gemsbok running
  • Scientific Name: Oryx gazella
  • Habitat: Grasslands and savannas of the Kalahari Desert
  • Size: 250 to 600 pounds
  • Diet: Grass, shrubs, leaves, roots

Gemsboks are social animals that live in groups of about 14 individuals. When food is scarce, they’ll split up into smaller groups, but after rainy seasons, they’ll group up to create a herd of up to 300. They’re unlikely to run away from a threat, and they may even attack lions with their horns. Since they’ve adapted to live in the desert, they can quench their thirst by eating certain plants rather than drinking water.

15. Gentoo Penguin

Gentoo penguin running
  • Scientific Name: Pygoscelis papua
  • Habitat: Across the sub-Antarctic islands
  • Size: 9 to 18 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, shrimp, krill

Gentoo penguins are known to be the fastest-swimming penguins, reaching up to 20 miles per hour. They learn to swim based on natural instincts, so their parents don’t teach them. When they dive underwater, their heart rate drops from about 100 beats per minute to 20. These penguins usually mate with the same partner every year, and they take turns incubating the egg. They build their nests out of whatever materials they can find, which may include pebbles and feathers.

16. Geoffroy’s Cat

Geoffroy's cat sitting in tree
  • Scientific Name: Leopardus geoffroyi
  • Habitat: Woodlands of southern South America
  • Size: 5 to 11 pounds
  • Diet: Rodents, birds, reptiles, amphibians

Geoffroy’s cats are wild animals that shouldn’t be kept in captivity. Yet, they have been bred with domesticated felines before, creating a hybrid known as the “safari cat.” While they look a lot like house cats, they have a lot of behaviors that don’t seem cat-like. They often stand on their hind legs, using their tail to balance as they scan the area for food and predators. They are excellent swimmers that aren’t afraid of fast-flowing rivers.

17. Geoffroy’s Tamarin

Geoffroy's tamarin in tree
  • Scientific Name: Saguinus Geoffroyi
  • Habitat: Tropical forests of Central America and northern South America
  • Size: About 1.1 pound
  • Diet: Fruit, insects, sap

These mammals are social creatures that often hang out with 3 or 4 other tamarins. They communicate with each other using whistles, chirps, chatters, and sneezes. They spend most of the day searching for food, and they may travel over a mile during each search. Many predators hunt these small mammals, but luckily, they’re fast enough to escape most animals, reaching 24 miles per hour. To protect themselves, they stay in the treetops and alert other tamarins of threats.

18. Gerenuk

Gerenuk with long neck
  • Scientific Name: Litocranius walleri
  • Habitat: Deserts across eastern Africa
  • Size: 65 to 110 pounds
  • Diet: Succulent plants, flowers, fruit

The gerenuk’s name means “giraffe-necked” in Somali since their necks take up almost half their height. They usually live in small groups of related females and their young while males live separately. When a female is about to give birth, she leaves the group and hides her newborn in a bush. The young gerenuk stays hidden for the first few weeks of its life. Gerenuks make lots of sounds to communicate with each other, including buzzing, whistling, and bleating.

19. German Cockroach

German cockroach sitting on leaf
  • Scientific Name: Blattella Germanica
  • Habitat: Near humans worldwide
  • Size: 0.5 to 0.7 inches long
  • Diet: Human foods, decaying plant and animal matter

There are over 4,500 cockroach species, but the German cockroach is one of the most common to encounter. They almost always live near humans so they can consume the food scraps they leave behind. They prefer warm places, but they can survive in some cold climates too. A German cockroach infestation isn’t just unsightly, but it also puts your family at risk of diseases. Even though these cockroaches have wings, they can’t fly.

20. German Shepherd

German Shepherd running
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 50 to 85 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

German Shepherds are herding dogs that are known for controlling flocks of sheep. They can run up to 32 miles per hour to catch up to runaway livestock. Yet, they’re a versatile breed, so herding isn’t their only skill. They’re easy to train as guide, police, and military dogs, and this breed fought alongside humans in WWI and WWII. After the wars, people outside of Germany renamed the breed “Alsatian” so they wouldn’t be linked to Germans. Some countries still use the name Alsatian today.

21. Gharial

Gharial sitting by water's edge
  • Scientific Name: Gavialis gangeticus
  • Habitat: Slow-moving rivers of northern India and Nepal
  • Size: 330 to 550 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, crustaceans, frogs, waterfowl

Gharials are large reptiles that are closely related to alligators, crocodiles, and caimans. These creatures are some of the closest relatives of dinosaurs today, but they have many adaptations to help them thrive in the present world. Gharials spend most of their time in the water, but they may leave to bask in the sun and hunt. They have slit-like pupils that help them see at night. Even though these reptiles are massive, they’re critically endangered due to hunting and habitat loss.

22. Ghost Catfish

Group of ghost catfish
  • Scientific Name: Kryptopterus vitreolus
  • Habitat: Rivers of Thailand
  • Size: Up to 5 inches long
  • Diet: Zooplankton, small worms

Due to its translucent body, this species is either called the ghost catfish, glass catfish, phantom catfish, or x-ray catfish. You can easily see the spine and beating heart of these see-through fish. If the light hits their bodies a certain way, a rainbow-like pattern will illuminate beneath them. Females of this species don’t carry eggs, but instead, they deposit the eggs on vegetation and wait for them to be fertilized by a male.

23. Giant African Snail

Giant African Snail Facing Camera
  • Scientific Name: Achatina fulica
  • Habitat: Humid forest areas of Africa, Asia, and the United States
  • Size: About 8 inches long
  • Diet: Leaves, flowers, fruit, vegetables

Giant African snails are native to Africa, but they have become an invasive species on other continents. They destroy many plants, which is why some places try to eradicate these snails. When these snails are born, they’re all males, but as they age, they have the organs of both males and females. They can lay eggs every five to eight weeks throughout their lives, and they can produce 500 eggs at once. These creatures never stop growing, so they’ll keep getting slightly bigger until they die.

24. Giant Anteater

Giant anteater in a field
  • Scientific Name: Myrmecophaga tridactyla
  • Habitat: Grasslands and rainforests of Central and South America
  • Size: 60 to 90 pounds
  • Diet: Ants, termites

Since they’re so large, giant anteaters need to eat about 30,000 ants and termites each day. They have no teeth, but their long tongues are adapted to help them scoop up the invertebrates without chewing. These mammals aren’t immune from bites, so they can only feed on a group of ants or termites for about a minute before they need to move on. They can locate ants because their sense of smell is 40 times better than a human’s. Giant anteaters only have a body temperature of 91 degrees Fahrenheit, which is one of the lowest of all mammals due to their low-calorie diet.

25. Giant Asian Pond Turtle

Giant Asian pond turtle sitting on rock
  • Scientific Name: Heosemys grandis
  • Habitat: Rivers, streams, and marshes of southeast Asia
  • Size: 6 to 11 pounds, 12 to 16 inches
  • Diet: Insects, worms, larvae, snails, carrion

Giant Asian pond turtles can thrive both in water and on land, but young turtles are hunted by many land animals. These reptiles are not picky about their diets, so they can find plenty of terrestrial and aquatic food. Their population is critically endangered because people often illegally capture them for food or to keep as pets. Sadly, many captured turtles that are released end up passing on diseases to the wild ones.

26. Giant Barred Frog

Giant barred frog sitting on ground
  • Scientific Name: Mixophyes iteratus
  • Habitat: Near streams and creeks in eastern Australia
  • Size: 3.5 to 5 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, spiders, snails, smaller frogs

Giant barred frogs are always near water because their bodies need to stay moist like other frog species. They make deep grunting noises, especially when males are trying to attract females. Females lay their eggs on rocks hanging over water so heavy rain will push the eggs into the water when they’re getting ready to hatch. Even without heavy rain, the eggs usually fall into the water on their own. The tadpoles are very large, reaching up to 3 inches long.

27. Giant Clam

Giant clam in coral reef
  • Scientific Name: Tridacna gigas
  • Habitat: Saltwater sea floors of the Indian and Pacific oceans
  • Size: 220 to 440 pounds, up to 4 feet long
  • Diet: Algae, phytoplankton, nutrients from water

Giant clams are so massive that it’s hard to believe they’re real creatures. These critters live a simple life by attaching themselves to a coral reef and staying there for the rest of their lives. The exterior of the clam blends in with the coral, but the interior is usually a mixture of blue, purple, green, and yellow patterns. The vibrant colors are caused by the algae these mollusks consume. When they close their shells, they’re capable of holding onto a person, but it’s unlikely that they’d purposely attempt it.

28. Giant Cowbird

Giant cowbird on branch
  • Scientific Name: Molothrus oryzivorus
  • Habitat: Open grasslands of southern Mexico and northern South America
  • Size: 11 to 14 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, seeds, fruit

Giant cowbirds occupy a wide range of open habitats, and they spend most of their time foraging on the ground. Sometimes, they land on the backs of capybaras and eat horseflies from their fur. These birds lay their eggs in other birds’ nests and expect them to raise their offspring for them. The adults can be aggressive toward birds of other species, but baby giant cowbirds won’t harm other young birds in the nest.

29. Giant Girdled Lizard

Giant girdled lizard on rock
  • Scientific Name: Smaug giganteus
  • Habitat: Burrows in grasslands of South Africa
  • Size: 14 to 16 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, small vertebrates, plants

Giant girdled lizards live in deep burrows that they dig themselves, which are about 1.3 feet deep and 6 feet long. Their bodies are covered in spiny scales, which they use to protect themselves from predators. They rarely travel far from their burrows so they can run and hide as soon as they sense a threat. Their scales are colored to blend in with grasslands, so if they don’t make it to the burrow, they can stand still to try and camouflage.

30. Giant Guitarfish

Giant guitarfish in aquarium
  • Scientific Name: Rhynchobatus djiddensis
  • Habitat: The Red Sea, Persian Gulf, and western Indian Ocean
  • Size: Up to 10 feet long and 500 pounds
  • Diet: Crabs, lobsters, fish, squid

Giant guitarfish might resemble sharks, but they’re actually a type of ray. Their size might be intimidating, but they’re not aggressive and they don’t have sharp teeth. They seem to be immune to stingray venom because they eat stingrays’ tails with no reactions. These fish are ovoviviparous, so they grow embryos inside of eggs, but the eggs stay in their bodies until they hatch. Giant guitarfish spend most of their time searching for food on the sandy sea floors.

31. Giant Leopard Moth

Giant leopard moth side view
  • Scientific Name: Hypercompe scribonia
  • Habitat: Across North America, Central America, and northern South America
  • Size: About 2 inches long
  • Diet: Broad-leafed plants

These beautiful moths are pests to many plants, especially when they’re in their prickly caterpillar stage. Like most moths, they’re nocturnal, but the males are more drawn to lights than females. If a predator approaches, these moths will release a yellow fluid to scare them off. However, these insects don’t pose any threats to humans. During mating season, giant leopard moths have breeding sessions that can last over 24 hours.

32. Giant Otter

Giant otter hiding among branches
  • Scientific Name: Pteronura brasiliensis
  • Habitat: Throughout the Orinoco, Amazon, and La Plata River systems of South America
  • Size: 55 to 75 pounds, 3.5 to 5.5 feet long
  • Diet: Fish, prawns, frogs, snakes

Giant otters are semi-aquatic mammals that live in groups of up to 20 other otters. Since they’re large carnivores, many people also call them “river wolves.” They’re fast hunters that will fight with other animals, such as caimans and jaguars, for food. During the hottest time of day, they have “nap time.” Even though they have no natural predators, they are endangered because of issues like pollution, overfishing, and climate change.

33. Giant Panda

Giant panda eating
  • Scientific Name: Ailuropoda melanoleuca
  • Habitat: Mountains in central China
  • Size: 200 to 400 pounds
  • Diet: Bamboo, other plants

Bamboo is the only thing pandas will eat if it’s available, even though it’s not the most nutritious plant. One giant panda can consume 26 to 84 pounds of bamboo in a day. These bears spend 12 to 15 hours each day sitting down and munching on bamboo. They rely on scent-marking to communicate with other pandas and to mark their territory. They can mark their territory by scratching trees, rubbing their bodies against objects, and spraying urine.

34. Giant Snakehead

Giant snakehead near the surface
  • Scientific Name: Channa micropeltes
  • Habitat: Freshwater in southeastern Asia
  • Size: Up to 5 feet long and 45 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, frogs, crustaceans

Young giant snakeheads are red, but as they get older, their colors darken and appear more brown or gray. They’re nicknamed “mudfish” because, in muddy areas, they can briefly crawl onto land and breathe air. They have a primitive lung behind their gills that allows them to do so, and it helps them survive if water oxygen levels are low. Yet, these fish are unable to hunt while they’re on land.

35. Gila Monster

Gila monster sitting on rock
  • Scientific Name: Heloderma suspectum
  • Habitat: Deserts of Mexico and southwestern United States
  • Size: 3 to 5 pounds
  • Diet: Eggs, small mammals, birds, other lizards

Gila monsters are one of the only venomous lizards in the world, and they’re the largest lizards in the United States. Their venom is injected through the grooves in their teeth. Bites from these reptiles can be painful, but they rarely cause death in humans. In the winter, Gila monsters go into brumation, which is hibernation for cold-blooded animals. They can store fat in their tails to help them go without food for four months.

36. Gila Woodpecker

Male and female Gila woodpeckers
  • Scientific Name: Melanerpes uropygialis
  • Habitat: Arid environments of southwestern United States and northern Mexico
  • Size: 8 to 10 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, berries, cactus fruit

When Gila woodpeckers create cavities in trees, they will defend their territory as far as 50 yards from that tree. Males will point their bills at threats and shake their heads before attacking. Gila woodpeckers locate food by pecking at trees, cacti, and shrubs. Sometimes, they’ll tap the plant lightly to see if it’s hollow with insect burrows. If they can’t find their preferred foods, they may steal the eggs from the nests of other animals.

37. Gilded Sapphire

Gilded sapphire at bird feeder
  • Scientific Name: Hylocharis chrysura
  • Habitat: Woodlands of central South America
  • Size: 3 to 4 inches long
  • Diet: Nectar

The gilded sapphire, also known as the gilded hummingbird, is a red-billed hummingbird that seeks nectar from brightly-colored plants. They favor flowers with a high sugar content, and they may hover or cling to the flower when feeding. Aside from breeding, they spend their lives in solitude. Males and females go their separate ways immediately after mating, leaving the female to build the nest alone.

38. Giraffe

Giraffe running
  • Scientific Name: Giraffa camelopardalis
  • Habitat: Open woodlands and savannas of Africa
  • Size: 1,200 to 4,200 pounds, 13 to 20 feet tall
  • Diet: Leaves, seeds, fruit

Giraffes are the tallest mammals on Earth, and even baby giraffes stand taller than the average human. Even giraffe tongues are huge at around 21 inches long, making them perfect for grabbing leaves off trees. It only takes giraffes a half hour to stand up after being born. They can also start running before they’re a day old. Once they learn to stand, they rarely lay down again. They can even sleep and give birth while standing. It helps that they have a shorter sleep requirement than most mammals, which is under 2 hours a day.

39. Gliding Tree Frog

Gliding tree frog clinging to branch
  • Scientific Name: Agalychnis spurrelli
  • Habitat: Tropical wetlands of Colombia, Panama, Ecuador, and Costa Rica
  • Size: 2 to 3 inches long
  • Diet: Crickets, flies, moths

Gliding tree frogs spend most of their time high in the trees, and they can glide by leaping and using the webbing in between their toes. During rainy seasons, these frogs reproduce rapidly. They lay small clusters of eggs on top of leaves, especially if they’re hanging over small pools of water. It only takes six days for the eggs to hatch, and the tadpoles fall into the water below them.

40. Glittering-Bellied Emerald

Glittering-Bellied Emerald on wire
  • Scientific Name: Chlorostilbon lucidus
  • Habitat: Open habitats of central South America
  • Size: 3.5 to 4 inches long
  • Diet: Nectar

Glittering-bellied emeralds have iridescent green bodies that shimmer as they fly. Males are covered in shiny feathers while females have a dull white belly. These hummingbirds prefer nectar from bright-colored flowers, and they may become territorial of their favorite flowers. Like similar species, these birds are always solitary except when mating. Males don’t stick around to help build a nest or raise the chicks. The females’ beaks are long enough to push food directly into the chicks’ stomachs.

41. Gold-Striped Salamander

Gold-striped salamander climbing
  • Scientific Name: Chioglossa lusitanica
  • Habitat: Moist, deciduous forests of Spain and Portugal
  • Size: About 6.5 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, spiders, small mollusks

Not much is known about gold-striped salamanders because their population is decreasing due to habitat loss. These salamanders have long tails that take up two-thirds of their entire length. They might lose their tails if they feel threatened, but like other salamanders, they can regenerate body parts. They seek out dark, moist areas near forests, including caves and abandoned flood mines.

42. Goldbelly Damsel

Goldbelly damsel close-up
  • Scientific Name: Pomacentrus auriventris
  • Habitat: The Western Central Pacific
  • Size: 2 to 2.75 inches long
  • Diet: Plankton

Goldbelly damsels spend most of their time swimming near reefs with algae, and they’re easily distinguished by their blue and yellow patterns. They don’t eat algae, but they feed off tiny creatures in the algae and they may use it to hide. They’re often kept in captivity because they’re beautiful and easy to care for. In the wild, they have lots of predators, so they’re skittish. They’re normally peaceful but may act aggressively toward fish they perceive as threats.

43. Golden Bamboo Lemur

Golden Bamboo Lemur climbing tree
  • Scientific Name: Hapalemur aureus
  • Habitat: Rainforests of Madagascar
  • Size: 2.7 to 3.7 pounds
  • Diet: Bamboo, flowers, leaves

Golden bamboo lemurs are critically endangered due to habitat loss. They’re the only known primates that can survive on a bamboo diet because the amount they eat is lethal to similar species. Over the years, they’ve developed a resistance to high levels of cyanide so they can eat as much bamboo as they want. They’re only native to Madagascar, and they hang out in small family groups of two to six lemurs.

44. Golden Eagle

Golden Eagle face
  • Scientific Name: Aquila chrysaetos
  • Habitat: Open areas across North America
  • Size: 6.5 to 15 pounds, 5.9 to 7.7 foot wingspan
  • Diet: Rodents, rabbits, birds, reptiles

Golden eagles are massive birds, so they also build massive nests. The nests are 5 to 6 feet wide and can weigh hundreds of pounds. They build their nests on the edges of cliffs, and they make them mostly out of sticks and vegetation. Sometimes, golden eagles place herbs on their nests to keep pests away. Once eggs are laid, the male and female take turns incubating them. They will hunt almost any animals they can get their talons on. While it’s rare, they’re powerful enough to take down adult deer.

45. Golden Lion Tamarin

Golden Lion Tamarin looking at camera
  • Scientific Name: Leontopithecus rosalia
  • Habitat: Rainforests of Brazil
  • Size: About 1.2 pounds
  • Diet: Fruit, insects, small mammals

Golden lion tamarins, also known as golden marmosets, are dangerously close to extinction, but lots of conservation efforts are being made. These mammals usually give birth to twins, but the risk of mortality in the first year of life is about 50%. These tamarins spend most of their time scurrying between trees that are 30 to 100 feet above the ground. They’re social animals that live in groups of up to eight relatives. They’re very vocal, so they will let out a high-pitched warning call if they sense danger.

46. Golden Pheasant

Golden pheasant in tall grass
  • Scientific Name: Chrysolophus pictus
  • Habitat: Mountainous forests of western China
  • Size: 2 to 3.5 feet long
  • Diet: Berries, seeds, grubs, leaves

While the only native habitat of this species is China, they’ve been introduced to many other locations because people enjoy their beautiful plumage. Yet, the females only have dull brown feathers, so it’s easy to distinguish the two sexes. In the winter, golden pheasants are more likely to group up in areas near humans because it’ll be easier to find food. They only feed on the ground, so they never eat snacks in their roosts in the trees.

47. Golden Poison Frog

Two golden poison frogs
  • Scientific Name: Phyllobates terribilis
  • Habitat: A rainforest on the Pacific coast of Columbia
  • Size: 0.5 to 2 inches long
  • Diet: Flies, ants, beetles, spiders

Golden poison frogs are one of the only poison dart frogs that are lethal to humans, making them one of the most toxic animals. These tiny frogs have enough venom to kill ten adult humans. They only live in a small area of lowland forest floors in Columbia, and they’re considered endangered. Both males and females can be aggressive toward each other, and they may wrestle to fight for territory or mates.

48. Goldfish

Goldfish with long tail
  • Scientific Name: Carassius auratus
  • Habitat: Cool freshwater of parts of Asia and Europe
  • Size: 1 to 6 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, algae, plants

Most people think of goldfish as the most basic pet, but there’s actually more to them than meets the eye. Goldfish need lots of room to explore, so they require at least 20 gallons of water in captivity. Depending on their care and where you got them from, they can have a wide range of appearances. Most goldfish end up being an inch or two long, but if you take good care of them, they may never stop growing. The world’s largest goldfish was 18.7 inches long.

49. Goliath Birdeater

Goliath birdeater spider close-up
  • Scientific Name: Theraphosa blondi
  • Habitat: Rainforests of northern South America
  • Size: 4.7 to 5.2 inches long, 11-inch legspan
  • Diet: Birds, mice, frogs, lizards

Goliath birdeaters, also known as Goliath bird-eating spiders, are the largest arachnids. As the name implies, they can eat birds, but they also seek out a variety of other small animals. When they capture their prey, they drag it back to a dark hole before eating it. They suck out the insides of animals first to aid digestion. They’re venomous with inch-long fangs, but their venom isn’t strong enough to kill a person. Yet, those who have been bit by this tarantula say it can be as painful as pounding a nail into your hand.

50. Goliath Frog

Goliath frog in the water
  • Scientific Name: Conraua goliath
  • Habitat: Rainforests of western Africa
  • Size: Up to 12 inches long and 7 pounds
  • Diet: Insects, fish, crustaceans, mollusks

The Goliath frog is the largest frog species with some growing as big as a small cat. This species is also known as the Goliath bullfrog and the giant slippery frog. They can use their long, powerful legs to leap as far as 10 feet. When building a nest, they often push heavy rocks together. They can push objects up to four pounds. They’re capable of swimming after prey to capture it, but they usually wait along the shore and snatch food using their long tongues.

51. Goliath Tigerfish

Goliath tigerfish close-up
  • Scientific Name: Hydrocynus goliath
  • Habitat: The Congo River Basin and Lake Tanganyika in Africa
  • Size: 4 to 5 feet, 90 to 100 pounds
  • Diet: A variety of fish

Some people compare these massive fish to African versions of piranhas. They have sharp teeth, allowing them to consume any fish smaller than them. The force of their bites can cut prey in half. Some Swahili tribes believe that there’s an evil spirit inside these fish, which is why they sometimes attack people. They have bitten off the fingers of fishermen and lunged at kids swimming. Experienced fish keepers sometimes desire them as pets, but they’re illegal to own and sell in many places.

52. Gopher Snake

gopher snake curled up
  • Scientific Name: Pituophis catenifer
  • Habitat: Arid areas of the western half of the United States
  • Size: 4 to 9 feet long
  • Diet: Small mammals, birds, eggs, lizards

These long snakes aren’t venomous, but their bites can still be painful to humans and animals. When agitated, these snakes may make themselves seem bigger and shake their tails to look like rattlesnakes, but they’re usually docile. They prefer to live in arid climates at less than 2,000-foot altitudes. The pocket gopher is this species’ favorite snack, so that’s how it got its name. Yet, these reptiles aren’t picky and will eat most animals that are small enough.

53. Gopher Tortoise

Gopher tortoise walking
  • Scientific Name: Gopherus polyphemus
  • Habitat: Sandy soils of the southeastern United States
  • Size: 8 to 15 pounds
  • Diet: Grass, berries, herbs

Gopher tortoises are the only tortoises native to Florida, and they also live in surrounding states. Their front feet are excellent for digging burrows. They dig burrows to hide in when they need to cool off, and they bask in the sun when they need to warm up. They live in small groups known as pods, but several pods sometimes come together to make a colony of over 50 tortoises. Most of the time, they’re docile, but they display aggressive behaviors during mating season.

54. Gould’s Frogmouth

Gould's frogmouth perched on branch
  • Scientific Name: Batrachostomus stellatus
  • Habitat: Tropical rainforests of southeast Asia
  • Size: 8.2 to 9.8 inches long
  • Diet: Moths, beetles, locusts

Gould’s frogmouths are nocturnal birds where the males and females look very similar. Both sexes can have either light brown or dark brown feathers. During mating season, breeding pairs build small, shallow nests and hide them under branches to protect them from predators. They make loud vocalizations that include sounds like “weeow-wah” and “wuk,” but the birds are rarely seen by humans.

55. Gouldian Finch

colorful Gouldian finch
  • Scientific Name: Erythrura gouldiae
  • Habitat: Grassy plains of Australia
  • Size: 5.5 to 6 inches long
  • Diet: Seeds, insects

Gouldian finches have patches of various colors on their bodies, and each bird’s pattern is different. Many of these finches have black faces while quite a few have red faces. If you find one with a yellow face, that’s the rarest variety. These birds’ diets are solely made up of seeds, except during breeding season because they seek insects for extra protein. They use their strong beaks to crack open seeds before eating them. Each bird eats up to 35% of their body weight each day.

56. Graham’s Crayfish Snake

Graham's crayfish snake curled up on log
  • Scientific Name: Regina grahamii
  • Habitat: Near ponds and streams in parts of the United States
  • Size: 1.5 to 2.5 feet long
  • Diet: Crayfish, fish, amphibians

These snakes are nonvenomous and semi-aquatic. They rarely bite, but they might release a foul-smelling musk if threatened. In the winter, they often hide in crayfish burrows and feed on crayfish, which is how they got their name. Instead of laying eggs like other reptiles, Graham’s crawfish snakes bear live young, and they can give birth to up to 39 offspring at a time. Humans often misidentify these snakes as cottonmouths and needlessly kill them.

57. Granite Night Lizard

Granite night lizard climbing
  • Scientific Name: Xantusia henshawi
  • Habitat: Rocky slopes of the San Jacinto Mountains
  • Size: 2 to 3 inches long
  • Diet: Spiders, beetles, ants, scorpions

Granite night lizards only live in a small area of southwestern North America, where they spend most of their time moving around in rocky crevices. They have smooth, flat bodies that allow them to squeeze into tiny spaces. At night, they come out of the cracks to search for invertebrates to eat. They rarely travel far from familiar crevices so they can have somewhere to retreat to if a wildfire occurs.

58. Granular Poison Frog

Granular poison frog sitting on leaves
  • Scientific Name: Oophaga granulifera
  • Habitat: Subtropical and tropical forests of Panama and Costa Rica
  • Size: 0.7 to 0.8 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, spiders

Like other poison dart frogs, these tiny amphibians have deadly toxins in their skin, but this species’ toxins can only be absorbed through the mouth or bloodstream. Granular poison frogs are usually red with blue legs, but they can have green or yellow skin too. Male granular poison frogs are highly territorial and will attack other male frogs. During rainy seasons, the males will let out chirps to attract nearby females. Females will approach the males if interested. After the fertilized eggs hatch, the females will lay unfertilized eggs as food for the tadpoles.

59. Grass Carp

Grass carp swimming together
  • Scientific Name: Ctenopharyngodon idella
  • Habitat: Rivers and lakes in Asia, from the Amur River to Vietnam
  • Size: 2 to 4 feet long
  • Diet: Aquatic plants

Grass carps are described as natural weed controllers for bodies of water in Asia. Thus, this breed is one of the most popular fish for commercial breeding. Even though they usually live in freshwater, they have a high tolerance for saltwater. They can survive in water with three times more salt than usual for several days. When they’re young, they grow about two inches per month if they have enough food to sustain themselves.

60. Grass snake

Grass snake curled up by moss
  • Scientific Name: Natrix natrix
  • Habitat: Near water across mainland Europe
  • Size: 2 to 3 feet long
  • Diet: Frogs, toads, newts

These snakes are common in Europe, and luckily, they’re not venomous. Their bites can be painful, but these reptiles are likely to avoid conflict if possible. The only time grass snakes may show aggression is when they’re molting because their skin will be more sensitive. They may release a foul scent when threatened. They live near ponds and lakes, and they’ll occasionally swim while hunting amphibians. Most of the time, grass snakes will swallow their prey whole.

61. Gray Bird Grasshopper

Gray bird grasshopper on leaf
  • Scientific Name: Schistocerca nitens
  • Habitat: Desert woodlands of southern North America
  • Size: 1.5 to 2.7 inches long
  • Diet: Aphids, mites, other insects

Gray bird grasshoppers often help the environment by eating pest insects off plants. Yet, in Hawaii, these grasshoppers are pests themselves due to destructive swarming. These insects are usually gray or brown with dark spots to help them blend into plants. It only takes three to four months for a young gray bird grasshopper to be full-grown.

62. Gray Fox

Gray fox climbing tree
  • Scientific Name: Urocyon cinereoargenteus
  • Habitat: Forests and plains of North America and northern South America
  • Size: 7 to 14 pounds
  • Diet: Rodents, insects, birds

Even though these mammals are one of the most common fox species in North America, they’re rarely seen because of their shy, nocturnal behaviors. They can run up to 28 miles per hour to escape humans. They have semi-retractable claws and rotating wrists to help them climb trees. If they catch too much food when hunting, they’ll bury the leftovers and mark the spot with urine so they can find it again.

63. Gray Mouse Lemur

Gray mouse lemur at night
  • Scientific Name: Microcebus murinus
  • Habitat: Deciduous forests on Madagascar
  • Size: 1.6 to 2.4 ounces
  • Diet: Insects, fruit, flowers

Gray mouse lemurs are some of the smallest primates in the world. They’re small enough to fit in the palm of a person’s hand. These adorable mammals have flat nails on each finger, but they have one longer claw on their hind foot that they use for grooming. They’re most active at night, and females spend their days sleeping in groups of related females and their babies. A gray mouse lemur is capable of leaping up to 10 feet in one jump.

64. Gray Seal

Adult gray seal on beach
  • Scientific Name: Halichoerus grypus
  • Habitat: Shores of the northern Atlantic Ocean
  • Size: 550 to 880 pounds, 7.5 to 10 feet long
  • Diet: Fish, squid, octopus, crustaceans

Gray seals hang out in large groups near the ocean water so they can easily access food. They can dive up to 1,560 feet below the surface and stay underwater for up to an hour. They eat about four to six percent of their body weight each day, but they don’t eat anything during mating and molting seasons. Females only give birth to one pup at a time, and they’re pregnant for about 11 months. Newborn gray seals already weigh about 35 pounds once they’re born, and as they grow, they gain about three pounds daily.

65. Gray Tree Frog

Gray tree frog hiding in tree
  • Scientific Name: Hyla versicolor
  • Habitat: Forests and swamps of the eastern United States and southeastern Canada
  • Size: 1.25 to 2.25 inches long
  • Diet: Mites, spiders, slugs, snails

Despite the name, not all gray tree frogs are gray. The colors can vary between types of gray, green, and brown, depending on the frog’s environment. They use these colors to blend into plants around them, especially trees. Sticky fluids come out of their feet to help them climb high in the trees. They can produce a slightly poisonous substance to protect them from predators. In the winter, they slow their metabolic process, which causes 80% of their body to freeze.

66. Gray-Banded Kingsnake

Gray-banded kingsnake curled up
  • Scientific Name: Lampropeltis alterna
  • Habitat: Hot, dry areas of southwestern Texas, southeastern New Mexico, and northern Mexico
  • Size: 3 to 4 feet long
  • Diet: Rodents, lizards, eggs, other snakes

These snakes don’t have venom, but they can subdue their prey by wrapping their bodies tightly around it. They are immune to some types of venom, so they sometimes eat small venomous snakes. These reptiles’ activity depends on the weather. They’re most active on hot, sunny days. They’re not social animals, so they spend most of their lives in solitude.

67. Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron in tree
  • Scientific Name: Ardea herodias
  • Habitat: Marshes of North America, Central America, and northern South America
  • Size: 3 to 4.5 feet tall, 6 to 7 foot wingspan
  • Diet: Fish, frogs, salamanders, rodents

These birds are very tall, but they only weigh up to six pounds. Great blue herons hunt by sitting very still along the shoreline. When they see prey approach, they strike it using their sharp bills. Eating fish can be messy, so these herons have powder that comes off the feathers on their chests. They can use the powder to clean themselves after eating a slimy fish. They can fly up to 30 miles per hour with their necks in an S shape.

68. Great Crested Flycatcher

Great crested flycatcher in tree
  • Scientific Name: Myiarchus crinitus
  • Habitat: Woodlands of North America, Central America, and northern South America
  • Size: 6.7 to 8.3 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, spiders, fruit, small lizards

Great crested flycatchers spend most of their time perched high in a tree, waiting for prey. They will fly after large insects and then return to the same perch. They’re often hidden by foliage, so you’re more likely to hear their unique songs than see them. During mating season, both males and females care for the young birds, and males will use loud calls to defend their nests. This species can be distinguished by their lemon-yellow bellies, and their crests aren’t always prominent.

69. Great Desert Skink

Great desert skink in the sand
  • Scientific Name: Liopholis kintorei
  • Habitat: Deserts of central Australia
  • Size: Up to 17.5 inches long
  • Diet: Termites, cockroaches, beetles, spiders

Great desert skinks dig large burrow systems for them to safely travel across the desert. In those burrows, they create a specific area for all the skinks to use as a “bathroom.” Burrows are usually shared by mating pairs and their young until the offspring are old enough to leave and create their own space. In cooler months, these skinks will hibernate underground. They can prepare for hibernation by storing fat in their tails.

70. Great Egret

Great egret with orange fish
  • Scientific Name: Ardea alba
  • Habitat: Marshes across North America, South America, Africa, Europe, and Asia
  • Size: About 3 feet tall, 5-foot wingspan
  • Diet: Fish, crustaceans, amphibians

Great egrets usually live near large groups of their species, and they spend their days hunting in shallow water. When flying, these egrets retract their long necks to help them fly faster. They can fly up to 25 miles an hour when doing so. During their mating season, these birds will grow special feathers to attract mates. Once they find a mate, the female will lay three or four eggs. If one of her eggs gets damaged, she may produce another one to replace it.

71. Great Gray Owl

Great gray owl perched on stump
  • Scientific Name: Strix nebulosa
  • Habitat: Boreal forests of northern North America
  • Size: About 2 feet tall, 5-foot wingspan
  • Diet: Small mammals, birds, frogs

Great gray owls are quiet, stealthy predators that can fly up to 34 miles per hour. Their talons are sharp enough to tear apart large prey, so they usually seek mammals like rabbits. Unlike most owl species, they will hunt during the daytime because their gray feathers help them camouflage well. These owls have excellent vision, so they can see ten to 100 times better than a human can. They can see at least 2,000 feet away.

72. Great Hammerhead Shark

Great hammerhead shark underwater
  • Scientific Name: Sphyrna mokarran
  • Habitat: Tropical saltwater worldwide
  • Size: 12 to 18 feet long
  • Diet: Stingrays, cephalopods, crustaceans

Great hammerhead sharks usually stay near the ocean floor and eat bottom-dwelling creatures. Yet, they may eat their own species if nothing better is available. They’re normally near coastal waters, but they have been found as deep as 984 feet. The average size of these sharks is 13 feet long and 500 pounds, but the record size is 20 feet long and 991 pounds.

73. Great Hornbill

Great hornbill perched on tree
  • Scientific Name: Buceros bicornis
  • Habitat: Forests of southern Asia
  • Size: 4.5 to 9 pounds, 5 to 6 foot wingspan
  • Diet: Fruit, snakes, lizards, large insects

The large beak-like body part on the great hornbill’s head is known as a casque. The casque is hollow and doesn’t have a purpose, but males sometimes strike other birds with theirs while defending territory. Figs are the preferred fruit of great hornbills, so hundreds of birds may gather at a single fig tree. When they find food to eat, they usually toss it in the air before swallowing. They’re loud birds that use a combination of grunts, roars, and barks to communicate with each other.

74. Great Plains Rat Snake

Great plains rat snake hiding in grass
  • Scientific Name: Pantheropis emoryi
  • Habitat: Grasslands and plains of the United States
  • Size: 2 to 5 feet long
  • Diet: Rodents, birds, lizards

Great plains rat snakes might look intimidating, but they’re timid creatures that aren’t venomous. If they feel threatened, they may coil up and shake their tails to look dangerous, but they’re unlikely to harm humans. Yet, when they capture prey, they will coil their bodies around it to kill it. These snakes can be difficult to spot because the brown pattern of their scales can blend into plants and dirt.

75. Great White Shark

Great white shark swimming
  • Scientific Name: Carcharodon carcharias
  • Habitat: Temperate, coastal waters of all oceans
  • Size: 18 to 26 feet long, 1,200 to 1,700 pounds
  • Diet: Seal, sea lions, dolphins

Great white sharks at the largest predatory fish, measuring about half the length of a bus. They can swim up to 35 miles per hour, and they have 300 razor-sharp teeth to capture prey with. They also have an excellent sense of smell, allowing them to detect seals that are up to two miles away. Even if there’s only one drop of blood, they can smell it. Many people fear these massive creatures, but only about 5 to 10 humans are killed by great white sharks each year.

76. Greater Earless Lizard

Greater earless lizard basking on rock
  • Scientific Name: Cophosaurus texanus
  • Habitat: Open deserts of southwestern United States and northern Mexico
  • Size: 2.3 to 5.1 inches long
  • Diet: Ants, wasps, spiders, butterflies, moths

Greater earless lizards are often seen scurrying across paths during the day to search for food. This species has a higher average body temperature than most lizards, allowing these reptiles to spend more time out in the sun. Greater earless lizards’ bodies are about 101.5 degrees Fahrenheit while most lizards are 80 to 95. When these lizards see a threat, they’ll wag their tails to let predators know that they won’t be easy to catch. If they’re unable to run fast enough, they may drop their tails in defense.

77. Greater Flamingo

Greater flamingo wading in water
  • Scientific Name: Phoenicopterus roseus
  • Habitat: Mudflats and coastal lagoons across Africa, Europe, and southwestern Asia
  • Size: 3.6 to 4.9 feet
  • Diet: Algae, diatoms, insects, crustaceans

Greater flamingos are the most common of the six flamingo species. Their feathers have a pink hue because of a carotenoid pigment in some of the substances they eat. When looking for food, they stir up muddy water with their feet, collect the mixture in their bill, and then filter out the substances they want to consume. They live in large flocks that can include hundreds of thousands of flamingos. They’re vocal birds that communicate with each other using a series of honks.

78. Green Anaconda

Green anaconda resting on tree
  • Scientific Name: Eunectes murinus
  • Habitat: Tropical rainforests of northern South America
  • Size: Up to 30 feet long and 550 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, birds, small mammals

Anacondas are rumored to be aggressive toward humans, but green anaconda attacks are rare. They’re non-venomous constrictors that suffocate their prey before swallowing it whole. They can detach their jaws to swallow larger prey. These snakes can communicate with each other using their tongues. Their tongues can detect chemical signals from other animals, and it’s especially helpful to find other anacondas during mating season.

79. Green Anole

Green anole with red throat exposed
  • Scientific Name: Anolis carolinensis
  • Habitat: Near trees and shrubs in the southeastern United States
  • Size: 1.5 to 3 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, spiders, worms, slugs

Green anoles can change colors depending on their environment, health, and mood. Active anoles near bright lights appear green, but calm anoles in cool, moist environments are usually brown. Both males and females have a bright red dewlap, which is the throat fan. These lizards stretch out their dewlaps to intimidate other creatures. Yet, if they feel threatened, they may drop their tails because they can grow back later.

80. Green Aracari

Green aracari face
  • Scientific Name: Pteroglossus viridis
  • Habitat: Tropical forests of northeastern South America
  • Size: 12 to 16 inches long
  • Diet: Fruit, insects, nuts, eggs, small animals

Green aracaris are members of the toucan family, which is apparent due to their large bills. Their bills look like they’d be heavy, but they have lots of tiny air pockets to reduce the weight. The edges of the bills are serrated to help them break fruit and nuts before eating them, but if they’re able, they’ll swallow fruit whole. Instead of building their own nests, they usually take over woodpeckers’ nests.

81. Green Frog

Green frog on rock
  • Scientific Name: Lithobates clamitans
  • Habitat: Swamps, ponds, and marshes of eastern North America
  • Size: 2 to 4 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, slugs, small fish

Green frogs are anything but picky. They’ll swallow just about any animal that can fit in their mouths. They sit still along the water’s shore before grabbing prey with their mouths or tongues. Most of the time, they live alone, but they come together in large groups during the mating season. The males’ mating calls sound like a single pluck on a banjo. One female green frog can produce up to 1,000 offspring each year.

82. Green Heron

Green heron sitting in tree
  • Scientific Name: Butorides virescens
  • Habitat: Lakes, ponds, and marshes from the United States to northern South America
  • Size: About 18 inches long, 26-inch wingspan
  • Diet: Fish, crustaceans, aquatic insects, tadpoles

Green herons are intelligent hunters. They will often use objects to lure prey toward them. If they try to capture larger animals, such as frogs, they’ll drown the prey before eating it. These birds make a series of loud sounds that each have unique meanings. When performing a mating ritual, these herons move their necks quickly, which is called a “zoop.” The term “zoop” also refers to the species’ quick motions while flying.

83. Green Humphead Parrotfish

School of green humphead parrotfish
  • Scientific Name: Bolbometopon muricatum
  • Habitat: Near reefs in the Indian and Pacific oceans
  • Size: Up to 5 feet and 165 pounds
  • Diet: Benthic algae, live corals

The green humphead parrotfish is the largest species of parrotfish. Their color may change throughout their life between shades of gray and green. The fused teeth of these fish act as a beak to break hard corals, which take up the majority of this species’ diet. If they didn’t eat coral, the coral would keep expanding until it had nowhere to go. After eating, the fish’s feces become a crucial part of the sandy sediment at the bottom of the water.

84. Green Salamander

Green salamander on leaf
  • Scientific Name: Aneides aeneus
  • Habitat: Cave and rocky areas near the Appalachian Mountains
  • Size: 3 to 5 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, arachnids, snails, slugs

Green salamanders have a dark body with green or yellow speckles to help them blend in with moss and lichen. They have flat bodies and long legs so they can squeeze into rock crevices to hide. They spend all their time hiding in dark crevices or moist environments. They only seek out food at night, and they’re rarely active during the winter months. Instead of laying their eggs in water like most amphibians, they hide them under rocks or logs and guard them until they hatch.

85. Green Sea Turtle

Green sea turtle swimming near surface
  • Scientific Name: Chelonia mydas
  • Habitat: In tropical and subtropical saltwater worldwide
  • Size: 240 to 420 pounds, 3 to 4 feet long
  • Diet: Algae, seagrass, seaweed, sponges

Green sea turtles are the largest hard-shelled turtle species and the second-largest sea turtles. They can live for 60 to 70 years, and they don’t reach sexual maturity until they’re between 25 and 35. They can be found in oceans worldwide, appearing on the coasts of over 140 countries. After a female turtle is born, she will always return to the beach she was born at to create a nest, no matter how far away it is. Green sea turtles primarily eat grass, so they act like lawnmowers of the ocean floor.

86. Green Terror

Green terror fish swimming
  • Scientific Name: Andinoacara rivulatus
  • Habitat: Freshwater of western South America
  • Size: 8 to 10 inches long
  • Diet: Worms, insects, crustaceans

Green terrors have patches of green on their bodies, but they also have a combination of other colors like blue, yellow, and gray. They get their intimidating name because they’re aggressive, so you’ll need to choose tank mates carefully if you keep them in captivity. They have a few tactics to help them catch prey. Some green terrors distract their prey by mimicking sounds and colors. Others will play dead to lure prey toward them.

87. Greenhouse Frog

Close-up of greenhouse frog
  • Scientific Name: Eleutherodactylus planirostris
  • Habitat: Wetlands in areas of the Caribbean, Florida, and Hawaii
  • Size: 0.5 to 1.2 inches long
  • Diet: Ants, beetles, spiders, worms

Greenhouse frogs are native to Cuba but have been introduced to several other areas with warm climates. They don’t cause significant damage in their non-native areas, but if populations continue to increase, they may cause some native invertebrate populations to go extinct. These frogs lay eggs in damp areas on land instead of in the water, so the eggs have thicker shells for better protection.

88. Grey Heron

Grey heron face close-up
  • Scientific Name: Ardea cinerea
  • Habitat: Near water in parts of Europe, Africa, and Asia
  • Size: About 40 inches tall, 61 to 77 inch wingspan
  • Diet: Fish, frogs, small mammals

Grey herons look like great blue herons, but they don’t inhabit the same continents. When it’s not breeding season, these herons will spend most of their time searching for food alone. They’re not picky, and they’ll take advantage of places like zoos where they know food is given out. They return to the same nesting spot every year, and they lay beautiful blue-green eggs. Even as chicks, they can be aggressive toward other birds. Sometimes, the chicks will even kill and eat each other to survive.

89. Grey Junglefowl

Grey junglefowl at the park
  • Scientific Name: Gallus sonneratii
  • Habitat: Forests of peninsular India
  • Size: 2.2 to 5.5 pounds
  • Diet: Seeds, fruits, insects

Grey junglefowl are wild ancestors of domesticated chickens. These birds make a series of loud calls at dawn and dusk. Like domesticated chickens, they’re social birds that live in groups led by a dominant rooster. They spend most of their time on the ground, but they’re able to fly into trees to avoid predators. They can also run fast for short distances to protect themselves. Females only lay about 24 eggs per year.

90. Grey Peacock-Pheasant

Grey peacock-pheasant walking in the forest
  • Scientific Name: Polyplectron bicalcaratum
  • Habitat: Forests of southern Asia
  • Size: 5 to 6 pounds, 28 to 30 inches long
  • Diet: Seeds, insects, fruit

Grey peacock-pheasants aren’t as colorful as popular peacocks are, but the males still have beautiful plumage. Both sexes are gray or brown, but the males have blue spots and a longer tail. When trying to attract a mate, males will spread out their gray and blue feathers. These birds communicate with each other by making hoarse croaking sounds.

91. Grey Reef Shark

Grey reef shark swimming with fish
  • Scientific Name: Carcharhinus Amblyrhynchos
  • Habitat: Across the Pacific and Indian oceans
  • Size: 40 to 70 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, squids, crabs

Grey reef sharks are one of the most common sharks near coral reefs. Once they establish an area to call home, they rarely travel far from that point. A way to distinguish this species from similar sharks is by the dark line on the edge of their tail fins. These sharks can act aggressively if threatened. They can also be violent when mating, and the females become more vulnerable to predators after because of open wounds.

92. Grey-Headed Flying Fox

Grey-headed flying fox in flight
  • Scientific Name: Pteropus poliocephalus
  • Habitat: Forests and woodlands of Australia’s east coast
  • Size: 9 to 11.5 inches long, 3-foot wingspan
  • Diet: Fruit, nectar, pollen

Grey-headed flying foxes are the largest bats in Australia. These mammals are often on the move, and they may travel up to three miles to get to feeding sites. So, mothers don’t have permanent nests for their young, and they often carry them while flying. These bats have well-developed senses of vision and smell that help them maneuver around the forest and locate fruit. If they get too hot, they use their wings to fan themselves.

93. Greyhound

Brown greyhound running
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 60 to 88 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

Greyhounds are the fastest dog breed, reaching up to 45 miles per hour. When they run, 75% of their time is in the air. Even though these dogs are quick, they’re usually docile and low-energy as long as they get their daily exercise. Most greyhounds sleep for about 18 hours a day, which is 5 to 7 more hours than the average dog. Some greyhounds even spend those hours sleeping with their eyes open.

94. Griffon Vulture

Griffon vulture landing on stump
  • Scientific Name: Gyps fulvus
  • Habitat: Cliffs in areas of Asia, Europe, and Africa
  • Size: 3 to 4 feet long, 7.5 to 9.5 foot wingspan
  • Diet: Sheep, cows, other mammals, carrion

These massive birds are excellent hunters. They can locate a mammal carcass from thousands of feet away. They build their nests on cliffs, and they spend most of their time at altitudes between 5,000 and 11,500 feet. Most griffon vultures use the same nest every year, but they may build it bigger whenever they make repairs on it. These birds have no natural predators, but they’re often poisoned by humans to stop them from eating livestock.

95. Grizzly Bear

Grizzly bear holding fish
  • Scientific Name: Ursus Arctos Horribilis
  • Habitat: Forests and mountains of western Canada and northwestern United States
  • Size: 400 to 800 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, rodents, hoofed animals, carrion

Grizzly bears are a species of brown bear that can weigh hundreds of pounds as adults, but when they’re born, they can weigh as little as one pound. Grizzly bears may not start reproducing until they’re 5 to 10 years old, which is about a third of their lifespan. Thus, they have one of the lowest reproductive rates of all mammals. Grizzly bears have a better sense of smell than dogs, and they can smell up to 2,100 times better than a human can.

96. Groundhog

Groundhog sitting in grassy field
  • Scientific Name: Marmota monax
  • Habitat: Woodlands of the United States and Canada
  • Size: 10 to 13 pounds
  • Diet: Fruit, vegetables, insects

Groundhogs, also known as woodchucks, are famous for predicting when spring will arrive. The tradition began because these large rodents come out of their burrows in early February, but they’ll go back inside if it’s too cold to forage. These furry critters are social with other groundhogs, so they will make whistling sounds to alert each other of danger. The may look bulky, but these mammals can run through their burrows as fast as 10 miles per hour.

97. Guanaco

Guanaco with offspring
  • Scientific Name: Lama guanicoe
  • Habitat: Mountains and plains of southern South America
  • Size: 175 to 310 pounds
  • Diet: Grass, shrubs, herbs

Guanas are related to camels, llamas, and alpacas. They are mostly found at high elevations in the Andes Mountains, so they’ve adapted to survive. They have large hearts and four times as many red blood cells as humans to help them thrive in low oxygen levels. When hunted by pumas, guanas let out a high-pitched bleating sound that resembles laughing. These mammals used to be hunted often for their warm wool, but now many of the places they live are protected.

98. Guinea Pig

Guinea pig sitting by flowers
  • Scientific Name: Cavia porcellus
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 1 to 3.5 pounds
  • Diet: Hay, vegetables, fruit

Guinea pigs are native to South America, but none exist in the wild anymore. They make a variety of silly sounds, including “wheeking” when they hear their humans open a food bag. Guinea pigs are foragers by nature, so they’re always hungry and will eat all day if they’re able. These rodents are active for about 20 hours a day, but even then, they may spend a lot of that time hiding. They’re happiest when they have guinea pig companions to live with.

99. Gulf Sturgeon

Gulf sturgeon jumping out of water
  • Scientific Name: Acipenser oxyrhynchus desotoi
  • Habitat: Freshwater of the southeastern United States
  • Size: Up to 9 feet long and 300 pounds
  • Diet: Crabs, shrimp, worms, insect larvae

A gulf sturgeon is a sub-species of Atlantic sturgeons that live in rivers and estuaries from Louisiana to Florida. The fish go to rivers to lay eggs, but they do not feed while they’re in the rivers. They wait until they return to estuaries before they search for food again. They’re bottom-feeders that will eat whatever small creatures are accessible. They use the barbels on their noses to sense invertebrates on the ground.

100. Gunnison’s Prairie Dog

Gunnison's prairie dog outside of burrow
  • Scientific Name: Cynomys gunnisoni
  • Habitat: Grasslands and deserts southwestern United States
  • Size: 1.4 to 2.6 pounds
  • Diet: Grass, herbs, leaves

Gunnison’s prairie dogs spend most of their time in colonies of several hundred of their kind. The colonies usually split up into smaller groups, and these mammals become territorial and violent toward unfamiliar prairie dogs. If they sense danger, they can let out a warning call that can be heard up to a mile away. These warning calls can last as long as a half-hour. During winter, they hibernate in their underground burrows with no food or water.

101. Guppy

Colorful guppy fish
  • Scientific Name: Poecilia reticulata
  • Habitat: Coastal streams in South America
  • Size: 0.6 to 2.4 inches long
  • Diet: Algae, plant remains, insect larvae

There are about 300 different types of guppies, all with unique vibrant colors. They’re sometimes called rainbowfish because of their colorful scales or millionfish because of how quickly they reproduce. One female can have 50 to 100 offspring every month. While most fish lay eggs, female guppies incubate the eggs inside their bodies and have a live birth. These fish are often used for reducing the spread of malaria because they will eat mosquito larvae if it’s available.

102. Gyrfalcon

Gyrfalcon close-up
  • Scientific Name: Falco rusticolus
  • Habitat: Across arctic and subarctic regions of North America, Europe, and Asia
  • Size: About 2 feet long, 3.5 to 4.5 foot wingspan
  • Diet: Birds, mammals

Like most falcons, gyrfalcons primarily hunt other birds, specifically ground birds and waterfowl. Their only natural predator is the golden eagle, but the two species rarely interact. They’re solitary birds, so the only gyrfalcons they interact with are their mates. Their feather colors can vary greatly, so some will appear white with dark speckles while others will be almost black. Females usually have darker feathers than males.

This is Just the Beginning!

Even with so many animals listed above, there are still more that fall under this category. Some animals that start with the letter G are popular and well-researched while others still have lots of unknown information. So, there are always new facts being discovered about the creatures on our planet because animals never cease to amaze us!