81 Animals That Start with H

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

Earth is filled with a wide range of animals, and some are so unique they don’t even seem real. You could spend your whole life researching animals on this planet and still not know everything, but you might as well soak up as many fun facts as you can.

This article will cover lots of animals that start with the letter H, including everything from strange insects to fuzzy mammals.

List of Animals That Start with H

Here are 81 animal species that start with the letter H.

1. Hainan Blue Flycatcher

Hainan blue flycatcher on branch
  • Scientific Name: Cyornis hainanus
  • Habitat: Moist, tropical forests of southeastern Asia
  • Size: 5 to 5.5 inches long
  • Diet: Small invertebrates

These tiny blue birds have been around since 1900, but not much is known about their behavior and eating habits. They live in lowland forests surrounded by trees or bamboo. The males have bright blue feathers and a white belly while females are mostly brown. They use short whistles to communicate with other birds, and they may even form flocks with other species.

2. Hair-Crested Drongo

Hair-crested drongo perched on tree
  • Scientific Name: Dicrurus hottentottus
  • Habitat: Forests of southern Asia
  • Size: 11 to 14 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, small lizards, frogs

Hair-crested drongos got their name because of the stringy hair-like feathers on the tops of their heads. They use their head feathers and other parts of their bodies to communicate with other birds. They spend most of their time in trees and shrubs, and they build nests that may hang as high as 32 feet in the air. Their black feathers help them blend in at night so they can capture unsuspecting insects. They also have large eyes that can help them spot prey from a distance.

3. Hairy Woodpecker

Hairy woodpecker by flowers
  • Scientific Name: Leuconotopicus villosus
  • Habitat: Forests across North America
  • Size: 7 to 10 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, berries, seeds, nuts

Like other woodpeckers, these birds search for insects by pecking into wood and peeling off bark. Their favorite food is the larvae of wood-boring beetles. If they can’t find any invertebrates to eat, they will settle for fruits, seeds, and sap. For most of the year, males and females have separate territories, but they come together briefly for the mating season in the winter. They excavate their nests into trees so larvae will be easily accessible to the newborn woodpeckers.

4. Hairy-Legged Vampire Bat

Hairy-legged vampire bat face close-up
  • Scientific Name: Diphylla ecaudata
  • Habitat: Tropical forests of Mexico, Central America, and northern South America
  • Size: 3 to 3.7 inches long
  • Diet: Blood from warm-blooded vertebrates

Hairy-legged vampire bats are one of three species of vampire bats. As the name implies, these mammals feed on blood, particularly the blood of chickens and other birds. Each bat can consume about half their weight in blood in only 20 minutes. They’re social creatures that live in small, supportive groups. If one bat doesn’t find anything to eat for the night, another member 0f the group may regurgitate some blood to keep the other bat alive. Vampire bats rarely kill their prey, but instead, they take some blood and flee.

5. Hairy-Nosed Otter

Hairy-nosed otter drinking water
  • Scientific Name: Lutra sumatrana
  • Habitat: Swamps, wetlands, and coastal water of Southeast Asia
  • Size: 11 to 18 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, water snakes, crustaceans, mollusks

Hairy-nosed otters are the rarest otter species. These otters were declared extinct in 1998, but there are still some that exist today. They’re endangered with only a couple hundred left. They either travel alone or in groups of two to four. They let out single-syllable chirps to communicate with other otters. Hairy-nosed otters spend their time as close to the water as possible, and during dry seasons, they may search for food near drainage canals.

6. Halavi Guitarfish

Halavi guitarfish on sea floor
  • Scientific Name: Glaucostegus halavi
  • Habitat: Across the Indo-West Pacific
  • Size: About 5.6 feet long
  • Diet: Mollusks, bony fish

Halavi guitarfish are rays that have flat bodies with pointed snouts. They travel along the ocean floor and feed in areas of shallow water. They’re usually skittish when they spot humans, and they’re listed as “critically endangered” because of pollution and habitat destruction. This species’ name comes from the Arabic word “halawi,” meaning “sweet.”

7. Hamadryas Baboon

Hamadryas baboon perched on rock
  • Scientific Name: Papio hamadryas
  • Habitat: Savannas and steppes of Ethiopia, Somalia, Saudi Arabia, and Yemen
  • Size: 25 to 65 pounds
  • Diet: Grass, seeds, leaves, roots

Male Hamadryas baboons are much larger than females, but their fur is a lighter color. These animals live in groups that include one male leader, and then several females and their offspring. Males that aren’t leaders can follow a group, but they often live alone. Like chipmunks, these primates have cheek pouches where they can store food. Even though they’re excellent climbers, the baboons spend most of their time on the ground.

8. Hamerkop

Hamerkop near the water
  • Scientific Name: Scopus umbretta
  • Habitat: Rivers and streams in Africa
  • Size: About 22 inches tall
  • Diet: Tadpoles, frogs, fish, aquatic invertebrates

Pairs of hamerkops build massive, dome-shaped nests out of whatever materials they can find. One nest can be made up of 8,000 objects and weigh 50 pounds. Other animals will often try to steal these impressive nests from the birds. Hamerkops hunt by wading near the water’s shore or grabbing creatures out of the water while flying. Stronger birds often steal the hamerkops’ prey, so they need to catch twice as much as they need.

9. Harbor Porpoise

Harbor porpoise floating in water
  • Scientific Name: Phocoena phocoena
  • Habitat: Temperate coastal waters of the Northern Hemisphere
  • Size: 4 to 6 feet long, 120 to 170 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, squid, octopus

Most harbor porpoises travel in groups of two or three in northern coastal habitats. They’re more timid than other porpoise species, so they rarely approach boats or humans. When they come to the surface for air, they’re careful not to make a big splash. They’re also smaller than other porpoises, so they need to eat more often to maintain their body weight. Like dolphins, porpoises are thought to be highly intelligent.

10. Harbor Seal

Harbor seal laying on rock
  • Scientific Name: Phoca vitulina
  • Habitat: Temperate coastal waters of North America and Europe
  • Size: Up to 370 pounds and 6 feet long
  • Diet: Fish, shellfish, crustaceans

Adult harbor seals don’t travel far when searching for food, but they can stay underwater for up to 30 minutes. When they dive, the mammals can close their V-shaped nostrils. They can dive up to 1,500 feet underwater, and they eat about 6% of their body weight each day. Despite having sharp teeth, harbor seals swallow their prey whole if they’re able. They only leave the water when they need to rest, escape predators, or give birth.

11. Hardhead Catfish

Hardhead catfish swimming past grass
  • Scientific Name: Ariopsis felis
  • Habitat: The Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico
  • Size: 12 to 28 inches long
  • Diet: Algae, seagrass, shrimp, sea cucumbers

Hardhead catfish stay along the ocean floor, sifting for food. They have serrated spines near their fins that can cut skin and draw blood. The spines can even cut through shoes, and they’re covered in a toxin. Larger fish may try to hunt them, but their spines protect them. They can produce a low-frequency sound by grinding teeth or vibrating bones near the swim bladder.

12. Harlequin Duck

Harlequin duck on the shore
  • Scientific Name: Histrionicus histrionicus
  • Habitat: Along the northern Atlantic and Pacific coasts of North America
  • Size: 14 to 20 inches long
  • Diet: Snails, clams, mussels, crabs

Male harlequin ducks are beautiful with a pattern of red, gray, white, and black feathers. Females aren’t as vibrant with brownish-gray feathers and some white spots. Females always seek out the males with the brightest plumage during the mating season. They communicate with each other using squeaks, earning themselves the nickname, “sea mice.” Outside of their breeding season, they rarely make any noises. They can dive 10 to 13 feet below the surface to search for food.

13. Harlequin Quail

Harlequin Quail on the ground
  • Scientific Name: Coturnix delegorguei
  • Habitat: Grassland and savannas across southern Africa
  • Size: 6.3 to 7.9 inches long
  • Diet: Seeds, insects, beetles, slugs, snails

Harlequin quails lay beautiful eggs that have light-colored shells with dark spots, similar to other quail species. The pattern helps camouflage the eggs from predators because many animals, including humans, consider quail eggs a delicacy. These birds usually build their nests on the ground. They’re quiet and shy birds, so camouflage is the eggs’ only defense. The birds make soft “chit” or “whit” sounds to get the attention of other quails.

14. Harlequin Rasbora

Harlequin rasbora close-up
  • Scientific Name: Trigonostigma heteromorpha
  • Habitat: Freshwater in Malaysia, Thailand, and Singapore
  • Size: About two inches long
  • Diet: Zooplankton, small insects, worms, crustaceans

Harlequin rasboras are often kept as pets because they’re manageable for beginners. They like to live in small groups of fish, and they can get along with other species of similar temperaments. They prefer to eat live food that’s moving. These fish can be tricky to breed because they prefer to have plants of the Cryptocoryne species present before they’ll reproduce. Males can be distinguished from females because they have more red in their coloring while females are golden.

15. Harp Seal

Harp seal laying in water
  • Scientific Name: Pagophilus groenlandicus
  • Habitat: Across the Arctic and northern Atlantic Oceans
  • Size: 260 to 300 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, marine invertebrates

Harp seals are clumsy on land, but they’re excellent swimmers. They’re capable of diving up to 1,000 feet below the surface, and they can stay underwater for about 16 minutes. They have a thick layer of blubber under their skin to keep them warm in the frigid water. Their bodies are extremely flexible, so they can almost fold the front half of their body backward. When traveling to breeding grounds, they may swim up to 3,000 miles round trip.

16. Harpy Eagle

Harpy eagle holding prey
  • Scientific Name: Harpia harpyja
  • Habitat: Lowland rainforests of Central and South America
  • Size: 11 to 20 pounds, up to 6.5-foot wingspan
  • Diet: Mammals, reptiles, other birds

These massive birds are named after the creature in Greek mythology that’s half human and half bird. They’re just as terrifying as their mythical cousins because they have the biggest talons of any eagle, reaching three to four inches long. They need these bear-like claws to carry large prey off the ground. When hunting, they can see prey that’s hundreds of feet away. One of their most notable features is their feather crown, which they will raise if they feel threatened.

17. Harris’s Antelope Squirrel

Harris's Antelope Squirrel on cactus
  • Scientific Name: Ammospermophilus harrisii
  • Habitat: Deserts of Arizona, New Mexico, and Mexico
  • Size: 8 to 10 inches long
  • Diet: Desert plants

Desert antelope squirrels will scurry around in open sunlight regardless of how hot it is outside. They will keep collecting food until their body reaches its maximum temperature, and then they’ll retreat to the shade to cool off. They often hold their tails over their heads like umbrellas to shade themselves. They often climb on cacti to eat fruit off them, but it’s unclear how they avoid the spikes.

18. Harris’s Hawk

Harris's hawk landing on branch
  • Scientific Name: Parabuteo unicinctus
  • Habitat: Semi-arid areas from southwestern United States to South America
  • Size: 19 to 30 inches long, 41 t 47 inch wingspan
  • Diet: Small mammals, lizards, other birds

These birds are a species of raptor that hunts in packs. The hunting style allows the hawks to take down larger prey than a single bird could handle. Each hawk has different roles when hunting, including scaring prey out of the nest, chasing it, and killing it. All the birds share the prey no matter what role they played. If there’s more than one female in a group of Harris’s hawks, only the dominant female can reproduce.

19. Hartebeest

Hartebeest in savanna
  • Scientific Name: Alcelaphus buselaphus
  • Habitat: Savannas and wooded grasslands of Africa
  • Size: 260 to 480 pounds
  • Diet: Grass

Hartebeests feed almost solely on grass. They gather in groups of up to 300 in areas with abundant amounts of grass. They make quacking and grunting sounds to communicate with each other. They’re usually calm creatures, but they will fight if provoked. They drink water whenever it’s available, but they can survive for long periods without water if necessary since their bodies are used to dry habitats.

20. Havanese

Havanese dog outside
  • Scientific Name: Canis familiaris
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 9 to 16 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic dog food

The Havanese breed was created by breeding Bichon dogs with an extinct breed known as Blanquito de la Habana. Despite being so small, these dogs have big personalities. They usually love to adventure and play outside. They have long, silky hair that can provide shade for them in the summer and keep them warm in the winter. So, cutting their coats too short could harm that natural protection.

21. Hawaiian Goose

Hawaiian geese standing on rock
  • Scientific Name: Branta sandvicensis
  • Habitat: Across Hawaii
  • Size: 1.7 to 2.2 feet long
  • Diet: Leaves, grass, berries, flowers

The Hawaiian goose, also known as the nene, is the state bird of Hawaii. Its nickname comes from the “nene” sound these birds often make. The chicks are born in an advanced state, so they don’t need to rely on their parents to feed them. Hawaiian geese are the rarest geese in the world. In 1952, there were only 30 left, but they’ve since been bred back from the brink of extinction, and a couple thousand live in the wild in Hawaii. Their favorite food is the ohelo berry, which grows on lava, but the geese have less webbing on their feet to help them walk over lava flows.

22. Hawaiian Monk Seal

Hawaiian Monk Seal swimming
  • Scientific Name: Neomonachus schauinslandi
  • Habitat: Subtropical waters near Hawaii
  • Size: 7 to 8 feet long, 375 to 490 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, lobsters, crabs, squid

Hawaiian monk seals often lay on Hawaiian beaches to nap or bask in the sun. Even though they rest near other seals, they’re not social creatures. They’re an endangered species with less than 2,000 seals remaining. They usually hunt within 200 feet of the water’s surface, but they can dive as deep as 1,800 feet and stay underwater for 20 minutes. Most of these seals are gray, but their fur color may become brown or green depending on the environment around them.

23. Hawaiian Stilt

Hawaiian stilt on water's shore
  • Scientific Name: Himantopus mexicanus knudseni
  • Habitat: Brackish, coastal water in Hawaii
  • Size: 15 inches long
  • Diet: Worms, insects, crabs, small fish

Hawaiian stilts are endangered birds that only live in Hawaii. They have long, pink legs so they can wade in the water while searching for prey. When they fly, their long legs dangle behind them. They build nests near water, and the chicks are ready to forage with the adults shortly after hatching. The chicks have speckled feathers to help them blend in with the plants around them.

24. Hawaiian Turkeyfish

Hawaiian turkeyfish swimming
  • Scientific Name: Pterois sphex
  • Habitat: Marine waters near Hawaii
  • Size: Up to 8 inches long
  • Diet: Crustaceans, small fish

Hawaiian turkeyfish, also known as Hawaiian lionfish, can be found anywhere from 9 to 400 feet below the water’s surface. They ambush prey at night by blocking them with their fins before swallowing them. During the day, they hide in underwater caves, sometimes resting upside down. They have venomous spines that can deliver a painful sting if touched. These fish are often mistaken for the South Pacific turkeyfish, which is an invasive species.

25. Hawfinch

Hawfinch resting on branch
  • Scientific Name: Coccothraustes coccothraustes
  • Habitat: Woodlands of Europe and parts of Asia
  • Size: 6.4 to 7 inches long
  • Diet: Seeds, insects

Hawfinches are the largest finches in the United Kingdom, and they have powerful bills that are used for breaking into nearly any seeds. Their bill can create a pressure of 150 pounds per square inch. It’s comparable to the bird crushing a thousand times its own weight. Despite their unique coloring, these birds are hard to locate because they’re shy. They usually hide high in the canopies of trees, rarely making sounds.

26. Hawksbill Sea Turtle

Hawksbill sea turtle swimming near coral reef
  • Scientific Name: Eretmochelys imbricata
  • Habitat: In tropical oceans worldwide
  • Size: 100 to 150 pounds
  • Diet: Sponges, sea anemones, jellyfish

Hawksbill sea turtles can be distinguished from similar species because of their pointed bird-like “beaks.” Their diet consists of mostly sponges, and they use their beaks to grab sponges out of coral crevices. Sponges have toxins that enter the turtles’ bodies when they eat them, but the turtles aren’t harmed by those toxins. The toxins will only hurt creatures that eat the sea turtles. Hawksbill sea turtles eat over 1,000 pounds of sponges each year.

27. Hazel Dormouse

Hazel dormouse in tree
  • Scientific Name: Muscardinus avellanarius
  • Habitat: Woodlands of southern England
  • Size: 3 to 4 inches long
  • Diet: Hazelnuts, fruits, flowers

These rodents favor hazelnuts above all other food, but it takes them about 20 minutes to open one. They eat the hazelnuts by gnawing a round hole in the shell. They’re solitary animals that spend most of their time sleeping when they’re not looking for food. They may hibernate for up to seven months each year. When it’s not mating season, hazel dormice can act aggressively toward others of their species to defend their territory.

28. Heaviside’s Dolphin

Heaviside's Dolphin jumping
  • Scientific Name: Cephalorhynchus heavisidii
  • Habitat: Cold temperate water off the coast of southern Africa
  • Size: 90 to 165 pounds, 5 to 6 feet long
  • Diet: Fish, octopus, squid

Heaviside’s dolphins are often mistaken for orcas because they have spots of black and white. They’re active, social creatures that travel in groups of up to 10 dolphins. They communicate with each other using high-frequency clicks. Then, they use low-frequency clicks when they want to tell something to a group of dolphins, such as warning them of a predator. They can jump out of the water, turn in the air, and land back in the water with almost no splashing or sounds.

29. Hector’s Dolphin

Hector's dolphin swimming
  • Scientific Name: Cephalorhynchus hectori
  • Habitat: Shallow coast waters near New Zealand
  • Size: 4 to 5 feet long, 88 to 132 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, crustaceans, cephalopods

Hector’s dolphins are known as the smallest and rarest marine dolphins. They also have small lungs that are about the size of human lungs, so they can’t stay underwater for more than three minutes at a time. They can never fully fall asleep because they would drown. These dolphins can use echolocation to locate prey underwater, and they often swim in groups of two to ten dolphins.

30. Hector’s Goby

Hector's goby swimming
  • Scientific Name: Koumansetta hectori
  • Habitat: Around coral reefs in the Indian Ocean
  • Size: 2 to 3 inches long
  • Diet: Algae, worms

In the wild, you’ll find these fish on sandy bottoms near coral reefs. They can be found anywhere from 10 to 100 feet below the water’s surface. However, they’re also commonly kept as pets. They spend most of their lives in solitude, but they can exist near peaceful fish of other species. They will attempt to jump out of an aquarium if it’s not covered. They will always sift through the sand for nutrients no matter how much food they’re given.

31. Heermann’s Gull

Heermann's gull on rock
  • Scientific Name: Larus heermanni
  • Habitat: Along the Pacific Coast of North America
  • Size: 18 to 21 inches long
  • Diet: Marine animals, carrion, eggs, insects

When flocks of Heermann’s gulls travel, they often follow the flight patterns of brown pelicans because they like to steal fish from pelicans’ pouches. They will also snatch carrion from other birds or steal eggs. When they’re not stealing from other birds, they fly over the water and dive down to capture prey. They nest in large groups on the ground, sometimes with as many as 110 nests per 1,100 square feet.

32. Hellbender

Hellbender under rock
  • Scientific Name: Cryptobranchus alleganiensis
  • Habitat: Cold freshwater streams of the eastern United States
  • Size: 12 t0 30 inches long, 3.5 to 5.5 pounds
  • Diet: Crayfish, fish, insects, tadpoles, smaller salamanders

Hellbenders are the largest salamanders in North America, but they’re rarely seen because they blend in with submerged rocks. If you see a hellbender in a stream, it’s a sign that the water is clean because these amphibians won’t stay in polluted water. Unlike other salamander species, hellbenders can’t regrow body parts if they lose them. While most amphibians have little to no teeth, hellbenders have small, sharp teeth that can hurt, but they rarely bite humans.

33. Helmeted Guineafowl

Helmeted guineafowl in nature
  • Scientific Name: Numida meleagris
  • Habitat: Dry, open areas of Africa
  • Size: 21 to 23 inches long, about 2.9 pounds
  • Diet: Seeds, fruits, insects, worms, spiders

Helmeted guineafowl spend most of their time on the ground. They’re capable of flying, but they’re more likely to run. Like chickens, they will only fly short distances, such as to get onto a tree branch. They live with about 25 other birds, and they will roost together and travel to the watering hole together. These birds mate for life, but they’re not the best parents. It’s common for mothers to abandon their nests.

34. Helmeted Woodpecker

Helmeted woodpecker in tree
  • Scientific Name: Dryocopus galeatus
  • Habitat: Tropical forests of eastern South America
  • Size: About 11 inches long
  • Diet: Larvae, insects, fruit

The helmeted woodpecker’s bill is shaped like a chisel so these birds can reach larvae inside wood. Their population is vulnerable because many forests have been removed from their range. Sightings of these birds are rare and unpredictable, especially since they don’t make as much noise as other woodpeckers. The shape of this bird’s red crest can change based on its emotions. If the woodpecker is excited, the feathers might flare out, but they may rest in a triangle shape otherwise.

35. Hercules Beetle

Hercules beetle close-up
  • Scientific Name: Dynastes hercules
  • Habitat: Rainforests in Central and South America
  • Size: Up to 7 inches long
  • Diet: Decaying wood, fruit

Hercules beetles spend most of their lives as larva. The larva stage lasts up to two years while these insects rarely stay adults for longer than six months. Males have long horns that grow about as long as the rest of their bodies. They use their massive horns to fight with other males during the mating season. The color of the Hercules beetle’s outer wings can change depending on the humidity, and some colors include yellow, green, brown, and black.

36. Hercules Moth

Hercules moth resting on tree
  • Scientific Name: Coscinocera hercules
  • Habitat: Rainforests of New Guinea and northern Australia
  • Size: 11-inch wingspan
  • Diet: N/A

As an adult, Hercules moths don’t have a mouth and don’t eat anything. They survive on the food they stored up while they were caterpillars. Caterpillars eat as many leaves in the rainforest as possible to prepare for their brief adult lives. The adult lifespan is only about 10 to 14 days, which is enough time for them to mate and reproduce before they pass away. Female moths can release a pheromone that males can sense from up to 1.2 miles away.

37. Hida Salamander

Hida salamander on moss
  • Scientific Name: Hynobius kimurae
  • Habitat: Forests of Honshu, Japan
  • Size: 4 to 7 inches long
  • Diet: Worms, insects, slugs, spider

Hida salamanders, also known as Hondo salamanders, behave similarly to other amphibians. To stay moist, they hide under logs and rocks but come out on rainy days. They lay their eggs in sacs in the water, and the larvae might stay inside the sac for weeks after they hatch. The larvae sometimes have claws to help them break out of the sac, but they lose those claws once they grow up into land-dwelling salamanders.

38. Highland Cattle

Highland cow in meadow
  • Scientific Name: Bos Taurus
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 1,000 to 1,800 pounds
  • Diet: Grass, leaves, flowers

Highland cows are known for their fuzzy, cuddly appearance, but they’re regularly raised for meat in the farming industry. They produce meat that’s leaner and more tender than other cattle. Their long hair has two layers: a downy inner coat and an oily outer coat. The hair gives them insulation from extreme temperatures, and it’s the longest of any cattle breed. They have complex emotions that help them remember creatures they’ve seen before.

39. Hill Prinia

Hill prinia long tail
  • Scientific Name: Prinia superciliaris
  • Habitat: Open, scrubby areas of southeastern Asia
  • Size: 6 to 8 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, larvae

The hill prinia’s most notable feature is its tail, which is longer than the length of its body. Adult hill prinias are normally all brown, but when they’re ready to breed, the feathers around their heads will turn gray. They prefer open habitats, such as fields or the edges of forests. Their high-pitched call is described as a “liquid-sounding note” that they keep repeating.

40. Himalayan Cat

Himalayan cat outside
  • Scientific Name: Felis catus
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 8 to 12 pounds
  • Diet: Domestic cat food

The Himalayan cat breed’s name is confusing because they didn’t originate in the Himalayas. Instead, they’re named after the rare Himalayan rabbits because they look similar. They were first bred using a Persian and a Siamese to get a cat with the Persian’s fur but the Siamese’s coloring. They’re quiet cats that prefer to cuddle with a loved one than make a mess. Since their faces are flat, they’re more sensitive to heat than other cats.

41. Himalayan Cuckoo

Himalayan cuckoo on tree branch
  • Scientific Name: Cuculus saturatus
  • Habitat: Across the Himalayas
  • Size: 11 to 14 inches long
  • Diet: Caterpillars, grasshoppers, crickets, cicadas

Female and male Himalayan cuckoos look similar, and they’re often mistaken for oriental cuckoos. Himalayan cuckoos are smaller with shorter wings. Their high-pitched calls that include a series of five notes also help them stand out from similar birds. In the Himalayas, these birds spend most of their time in forests, but they will travel to open habitats to mate.

42. Himalayan Marmot

Himalayan marmot on rock
  • Scientific Name: Marmota himalayana
  • Habitat: Throughout the Himalayas in southern Asia
  • Size: 9 to 20 pounds
  • Diet: Grassy plants

Colonies of Himalayan marmots work together to build burrows that are 7 to 33 feet deep. In the winter, they use the burrows to hibernate. They hibernate for six to eight months of the year. Males leave the burrows more often than females so they can guard them. If any of the marmots see a threat, they’ll let out a warning call to alert others. When Himalayan marmots enter their burrow, they greet each other by touching their noses to each other’s noses, mouths, and cheeks.

43. Himalayan Monal

Himalayan monal
  • Scientific Name: Lophophorus impejanus
  • Habitat: Himalayan forests from Afghanistan to Bhutan
  • Size: 3 to 5 pounds, 2 to 2.5 feet long
  • Diet: Insects, seeds, roots, berries

Like most pheasants, male Himalayan monals have vibrantly-colored feathers while the female’s feathers are duller. When foraging, they dig up to 10 inches in the dirt to find insects and seeds. They spend almost all their time awake foraging, and they aren’t deterred by snow. They have a larger crop than other birds, allowing them to store food longer. Sadly, their population is decreasing because poachers value their unique crest.

44. Himalayan Pika

Himalayan Pika
  • Scientific Name: Ochotona himalayana
  • Habitat: Rocky places in parts of India, Nepal, and Tibet
  • Size: 6 to 9 inches long
  • Diet: Grass, flowers, stems

These adorable creatures are shy and try to avoid humans if possible. They spend as much time in their burrows as possible and only come out to forage. When they climb into the burrow, they make a whistling sound to let the other pikas know they’re coming. If their home gets too hot, they’ll move to a new location. So, scientists observe pikas as a way to study climate change. They’re not rodents, but instead, they’re related to rabbits.

45. Himalayan Snowcock

Himalayan snowcock foraging
  • Scientific Name: Tetraogallus himalayensis
  • Habitat: High alpine meadows across the Himalayas
  • Size: 4.4 to 6.8 pounds, 22 to 29 inches long
  • Diet: Rushes, tubers, leaves, berries

Himalayan snowcocks are social birds that forage and travel in groups. They’re not overly scared of humans, so they may even approach people if they think there’s food. They spend most of their time on the ledges of cliffs so that predators can’t run after them. They spend their days walking up steep slopes, foraging at the top, and then flying down to roost for the night.

46. Himalayan Tahr

Himalayan Tahr in rocky habitat
  • Scientific Name: Hemitragus jemlahicus
  • Habitat: The Himalayas in Tibet, India, Bhutan, and Nepal
  • Size: 78 to 189 pounds
  • Diet: Grass, herbs, leaves

Himalayan tahrs are wild goats that are well adapted to the harsh climates of the mountain range. They have thick undercoats to protect them during the coldest parts of the year, and they shed the extra fur during the warmest months. Their large horns grow backward to avoid hurting each other during the mating season since head-butting is common. They have rubber-like hooves to help them climb on steep rocks. They have a complex digestive system that allows them to regurgitate their food several times to get all the nutrients.

47. Hippopotamus

Hippopotamus swimming
  • Scientific Name: Hippopotamus amphibius
  • Habitat: Lakes, rivers, and wetlands of Africa
  • Size: 3,000 to 9,000 pounds
  • Diet: Grass, flowers, grains

Despite being so large, a hippopotamus’ diet is almost completely herbivorous. Hippos eat about 80 pounds of grass every night. They may travel up to six miles each night looking for enough food to fill them up. If no plants are available, they may eat the carcasses of other animals. Hippos can store food in their stomachs if they can’t find enough plants, allowing them to go up to three weeks without eating. Even though they don’t hunt mammals, they’re highly aggressive and kill about 500 people each year.

48. Hoatzin

Hoatzin spreading out wings
  • Scientific Name: Ophisthocomus hoazin
  • Habitat: The Amazon and Orinoco river basins
  • Size: 24 to 26 inches long, 1.7 to 2.2 pounds
  • Diet: Swamp plants

Hoatzins are also known as “reptile birds” due to their dinosaur-like appearance. Like the prehistoric creature Archaeopteryx, hoatzins have small claws on the ends of their wings to help them climb trees. Some people have also nicknamed these animals “skunk birds” because when they break down food inside their bodies, their gut releases an unpleasant smell. These birds have large wings, but they rarely fly because their pectoral muscles are poorly developed.

49. Hobby

Hobby bird on perch
  • Scientific Name: Falco subbuteo
  • Habitat: Wooded areas across Europe and Asia
  • Size: 11 to 14 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, small birds, bats

The hobby, also known as the Eurasian hobby, is a small falcon that’s just as agile as larger birds of prey. They can catch and eat flying creatures in midair. When mating, they steal nests from other birds, such as crows, rather than building their own nests. They live in open areas, especially around flooded gravel pits. An increase in these open spaces has also increased the hobby population.

50. Hobo Spider

Hobo spider on leaf
  • Scientific Name: Eratigena agrestis
  • Habitat: Dark areas across the United States
  • Size: 0.25 to 0.5 inch body length, 1 to 2 inch leg span
  • Diet: Flies, cockroaches, ants

Hobo spiders build funnel-like webs to capture a variety of insects. While they can eliminate many pests from homes, they’re also considered pests themselves. They can’t see well, so if provoked, they may run in any direction trying to flee, which can cause them to accidentally climb onto humans. Luckily, their bites aren’t painful or dangerous. After two hobo spiders mate, the male will die shortly after.

51. Hodgson’s Frogmouth

Hodgson's frogmouth building nest
  • Scientific Name: Batrachostomus hodgsoni
  • Habitat: Temperate forests of southeastern Asia
  • Size: 9.6 and 10.8 inches long
  • Diet: Insects

The feather pattern of Hodgson’s frogmouths closely resemble a tree so they can camouflage. If two frogmouths freeze against each other with their bills pointed upward, they look like a branch on the tree. The males have duller colors than the females because they care for the eggs during the day, and the dull colors help them hide better in direct sunlight. There are bristles in these birds’ beaks so they can sense when to close their mouths on their prey.

52. Hoffmann’s Two-Toed Sloth

Young Hoffmann's two-toed sloth
  • Scientific Name: Choloepus hoffmanni
  • Habitat: Tropical forests of Central and South America
  • Size: 10 to 20 pounds
  • Diet: Leaves, flowers, fruits

Hoffmann’s two-toed sloths are solitary, nocturnal animals that spend almost all their time in trees. The only time you’ll find them on the ground is if they’re moving from one tree to another. Like other sloths, they’re very slow, only moving 0.46 feet per second. In their lives, they will only move between about 25 trees. Their “lazy” demeanor is a result of their low-energy diet. Their algae-covered fur helps them hide from predators, but they will bite or scratch threats if needed.

53. Honduran White Bat

Honduran white bats on leaf
  • Scientific Name: Ectophylla alba
  • Habitat: Lowland rainforests of Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama
  • Size: 1.46 to 1.85 inches long
  • Diet: Figs, other fruit

These tiny bats build tent-like shelters out of heliconia plant leaves, and up to 15 bats will rest in them. They have to keep rebuilding their tents over and over again throughout their lives. They always build their nests near fig trees if possible since figs are their favorite food. Their nose, ears, and wings have a yellow pigment because they contain carotenoids, which are what make carrots orange. Their noses are leaf-shaped because they can improve the efficiency of echolocation.

54. Honey Badger

honey badger angry
  • Scientific Name: Mellivora Capensis
  • Habitat: Dry areas of Africa and southwestern Asia
  • Size: 11 to 35 pounds
  • Diet: Honey, insects, small mammals, amphibians, reptiles

Honey badgers are the most fearless animals. They won’t hesitate to fight creatures of all sizes if they feel threatened. They have sharp claws that can help them dig 10-foot tunnels in as little as ten minutes. Sometimes, they will steal burrows and prey from other animals, which is how they earned the reputation of “not caring,” as mentioned in a famous YouTube video. Honey badgers have thick, loose skin that protects them from arrows and machetes. They’re also naturally immune to venomous snake bites.

55. Honey Gourami

Honey gourami floating in water
  • Scientific Name: Trichogaster chuna
  • Habitat: Freshwater of India, Bangladesh, and Nepal
  • Size: About 2 inches long
  • Diet: Insect larvae, crustaceans, insects

Like other types of gourami fish, honey gouramis have two long, skinny fins that help them navigate the water around them. The colors of males and females can be different, so the two sexes were recognized as two species when they were first discovered. The color of a male’s scales is usually more vibrant than a female’s. Sometimes, pet stores will sell dwarf honey gourami fish as honey gouramis because of their similar appearance, so be cautious if you want to buy one as a pet.

56. Honeycomb Moray

Honeycomb moray
  • Scientific Name: Gymnothorax favagineus
  • Habitat: Throughout the Indo-West Pacific
  • Size: Up to 6.5 feet long
  • Diet: Fish, mollusks, octopuses

Honeycomb moray eels have large canine teeth that are used for tearing the flesh of their prey. If they bite onto prey too large for them, they’ll try their best to rip a chunk off the creature. They aren’t aggressive but can deliver a painful bite if threatened. Like similar species, they’re often seen hiding in small caves with only their heads sticking out. Most morays have both male and female reproductive organs, so they can reproduce with either sex.

57. Hong Kong Warty Newt

Hong Kong warty newt up close
  • Scientific Name: Paramesotriton hongkongensis
  • Habitat: Streams in Hong Kong
  • Size: 4 to 5.6 inches long
  • Diet: Worms, insects, shrimp, snails

These nocturnal newts spend time both on land and in water. They’re not picky about what they eat, so even though they mostly eat invertebrates, they may target other amphibians if needed. Females may even eat their own eggs and larvae, and they can lay 115 to 120 eggs at a time. The adults and larvae of Hong Kong warty newts contain toxins, but they’re not deadly to people.

58. Hooded Oriole

Hooded oriole perched on plant
  • Scientific Name: Icterus cucullatus
  • Habitat: Areas with palm trees in southwestern United States and Mexico
  • Size: 1 to 2 inches long
  • Diet: Nectar, jelly, berries, insects

Hooded Orioles are known for having a “sweet tooth,” so if you want to attract them to your yard, you can put out jelly or fruit for them. They aren’t interested in birdseed. They’re talkative birds that will often mimic the sounds of other birds. Not all Hooded Orioles migrate in the winter and the ones that do don’t travel far. They like to stay in warm, sunny weather as much as possible.

59. Hooded Seal

Hooded seals on ice
  • Scientific Name: Cystophora cristata
  • Habitat: Cold waters of the Arctic and northern Atlantic Oceans
  • Size: 350 to 650 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, shrimp, octopus, squid

Most of the time, these seals look like any other seal species. Yet, when a male wants to attract a female or fight another male, he can expand the skin on his head to the size of about two footballs. If he closes one of his nostrils, he can also make bright red skin expand out his nose. The males gain these “hoods” when they’re about four years old. When hunting, these seals can dive over 3,000 feet below the surface and stay under for almost an hour.

60. Hooded Siskin

Hooded Siskin in tree
  • Scientific Name: Spinus magellanicus
  • Habitat: Across South America
  • Size: 4.7 to 5.5 inches long
  • Diet: Seeds, leaves, insects

Hooded siskins will forage wherever food is accessible, so they can be found on the ground, in bushes, or in trees. For most of the year, they spend time alone or in pairs, but during the mating season, they’ll gather in large flocks that can include other species. When feeding, they may act aggressively if other birds get too close to their food. They build their small cup-shaped nests high in the trees.

61. Hooded Vulture

hooded vulture in dry grass
  • Scientific Name: Necrosyrtes monachus
  • Habitat: Across sub-Saharan Africa
  • Size: 2 to 2.5 feet long, 3.3 to 5.7 pounds
  • Diet: Insects, mussels, mollusks, carrion

Hooded vultures are smaller than most vultures, but they’re still scavengers. They will usually wait to pick up the scraps of carrion left by a larger predator. They can hover in the air for hours, allowing them to get to prey before other birds. The small size of these birds also makes them quicker to take off than other vultures. They’re not afraid of humans, so they will often feed from human garbage bins too. They usually travel in groups, and they mate for life.

62. Horn Shark

Horn shark on sea floor
  • Scientific Name: Heterodontus francisci
  • Habitat: In the Pacific Ocean along California’s coast
  • Size: 2.5 to 4 feet long
  • Diet: Fish, crabs, sea urchins

Horn sharks spend most of their time on the sea floor moving slowly and blending in with the substrate. They will only speed up to catch prey. They move by pushing their fins against the ground. Each horn shark holds a territory of about 10,000 square feet, and most don’t leave that range their whole lives. They’re sensitive to light, so they prefer to stay in crevices and shadows.

63. Horned Adder

Horned adder in the sand
  • Scientific Name: Bitis caudalis
  • Habitat: Arid, sandy areas of southern Africa
  • Size: 12 to 20 inches long
  • Diet: Lizards, birds, small mammals

Horned adders prefer sandy habitats because they like to bury themselves in the sand so only their eyes are showing. They sit in the sand until prey passes by, then they pounce. They have hollow, hinged fangs that can produce venom, so humans are advised to keep a distance. Their venom isn’t deadly to humans, but it can cause bruising, swelling, and pain. Males have more colorful scales than females, but females are significantly larger.

64. Horned Desert Viper

Horned desert viper face
  • Scientific Name: Cerastes cerastes
  • Habitat: Deserts of northern Africa
  • Size: 1 to 2 feet long
  • Diet: Lizards, rodents, birds

These snakes have pointy, horn-like scales on their heads to protect their eyes from sand. They collect dew in their scales to keep themselves hydrated in arid environments. When threatened, these snakes will rattle their tails because they can’t hiss. Their venom can be fatal to humans in rare cases, and some side effects include blood clotting and straining the heart. It’s believed that a horned desert viper was the snake that helped Cleopatra end her life.

65. Horned Parakeet

Horned parakeet on perch
  • Scientific Name: Eunymphicus cornutus
  • Habitat: Forests of New Caledonia
  • Size: About 14 inches long
  • Diet: Nuts, seeds, fruit

Horned parakeets are part of less than 1% of the bird species that practice polyandry. The term means that one female will share her nest and mate with several males each breeding season. Similar species normally have a single mate their whole lives. These birds get their name because of the unique tufts of feathers on their heads that look like horns. Sadly, this species’ population is in danger because of population loss and being hunted by invasive species.

66. Horned Puffin

Horned puffin on cliff
  • Scientific Name: Fratercula corniculata
  • Habitat: In the North Pacific Ocean and coasts of Alaska and British Columbia
  • Size: 12 to 13 inches long, 1.3 to 1.4 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, squid, worms, crustaceans

Horned puffins look like Atlantic puffins, but they have long horn-like flesh above each eye. They spend most of their time in the ocean but come back to the coast to build nests on cliffs. When hunting, they quickly swim through schools of fish and grab fish with their beaks. They look like they’re “flying” underwater, and they can dive as deep as 250 feet. Young puffins only eat fish that their parents bring back, but adults may seek out other marine animals for themselves.

67. Horse

Horse galloping
  • Scientific Name: Equus caballus
  • Habitat: Domesticated
  • Size: 600 to 1,500 pounds
  • Diet: Grass, hay, fruit

Horses have evolved for over 50 million years after starting as smaller animals with many toes. In more recent years, they’ve grown up side-by-side with humans, being used for transportation and companionship. They have a better sense of smell and more effective night vision than humans. All horses have the same scientific name, but there are about 400 different breeds. While they lay down for deep sleep, horses can sleep standing up to “power nap.”

68. Horvath’s Rock Lizard

Horvath's rock lizard on rock
  • Scientific Name: Iberolacerta horvathi
  • Habitat: Rocky areas of southern Europe
  • Size: About 4 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, scorpions

Horvath’s rock lizards can be found in Croatia, Slovenia, and some parts of Italy and Austria. They prefer to live in rocky areas of high elevations, such as cliffs. They’re agile creatures that can leap into the air to catch flying insects. They are most active on cloudy, humid days. Not many sightings have been reported because people often confuse them with other small lizards, such as the common wall lizard.

69. House Centipede

House centipede in bathtub
  • Scientific Name: Scutigera coleoptrata
  • Habitat: Area of high moisture worldwide
  • Size: 1 to 1.5 inches long
  • Diet: Spiders, cockroaches, silverfish, beetle larvae

House centipedes might look frightening, but they won’t harm humans or buildings. They may eat some of the other pests in a person’s house. They have 15 pairs of legs that help them run 16 inches per second. They can even run on only their hind legs. If they lose one of their legs, they can regrow it. These invertebrates are attracted to water, so they usually appear near drains or in damp basements.

70. House Finch

House finch perched on branch
  • Scientific Name: Haemorhous mexicanus
  • Habitat: Across the United States and Mexico
  • Size: 5 to 6 inches long
  • Diet: Grass, seeds, flowers

Adult male house finches have red feathers while females are only brown. The intensity of the red feathers can vary based on how much fruit the bird eats. These birds only seek out plants for food, but they may accidentally eat insects in the process. House finches live in large flocks, so if one finds a bird feeder, more will soon follow. In their flocks, the females are usually dominant over the males.

71. House Mouse

House mouse food scraps
  • Scientific Name: Mus musculus
  • Habitat: Near manmade structures worldwide
  • Size: 2.4 to 4.3 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, spiders, seeds, fruit, carrion

As the name implies, these are the rodents that most commonly inhabit homes. They are constantly eating, so they’re not picky about what they consume. As a result, they can poop 40 to 100 times a day. At night, house mice will make between 20 to 30 trips to collect as much food as they can. They have poor eyesight, but the rest of their senses are better than similar species. They have excellent agility skills, so they can jump long distances and swim as needed.

72. House Sparrow

Male and female house sparrow
  • Scientific Name: Passer domesticus
  • Habitat: Residential and urban areas worldwide
  • Size: 6 to 7 inches long
  • Diet: Insects, worms, seeds, spiders

House sparrows are some of the most common birds in the world, especially since they like to stay close to humans. They like to build their nests on manmade structures, and they’re often attracted to bird feeders. Males and females look similar, but males tend to have darker colors. These sparrows hop on the ground a lot to search for food, but they can also fly fast with 15 wing beats per second. They can even swim underwater as a survival instinct.

73. House Wren

House wren perched on branch
  • Scientific Name: Troglodytes aedon
  • Habitat: Across North and South America
  • Size: 4.3 to 5.1 inches long
  • Diet: Insects

These little birds are highly territorial, especially toward other wrens. If they find nests in their territory, they may puncture the eggs or shove the hatchlings out. Both females and males sing competitively, and the birds who sing the loudest won’t lose as many eggs to other birds. House wrens will use any materials to build a nest, which could even include sharp objects like nails and paper clips. These birds seem to favor nest boxes that are painted red or green.

74. Housefly

Housefly close-up
  • Scientific Name: Musca domestica
  • Habitat: Worldwide
  • Size: 0.12 to 0.25 inches long
  • Diet: Human food, dead animals, feces

About 90% of the pests invading our homes are houseflies because they thrive on leftover food and garbage. Houseflies can taste with their legs, so they will land on many objects before eating. Since their feet touch so many filthy items, they can pass diseases when they land on our food. They also lay their eggs in garbage, feces, and rotting carcasses. These flies can see about 360 degrees without moving their eyes. They only live about 28 days.

75. Houston Toad

Houston toad in the grass
  • Scientific Name: Anaxyrus houstonensis
  • Habitat: Forest areas of southeastern Texas
  • Size: 2 to 3.5 inches long
  • Diet: Insects

Houston toads are an endangered species that’s only found in Texas. Today, there are only 3,000 to 4,000 of these amphibians left, and their decline is primarily due to habitat loss. Houston toads have chemicals inside their bodies that release a foul taste when predators try to eat them. Those chemicals can be used for human medicines that help with heart disease and nervous disorders. They can only move in short hops, so it’s difficult for them to outrun predators.

76. Huchen

Huchen fish underwater
  • Scientific Name: Hucho hucho
  • Habitat: The Danube basin of Slovenia
  • Size: Up to 4.5 feet long and 100 pounds
  • Diet: Aquatic insects, fish, frogs, worms

The huchen, also known as the Danube salmon, is a solitary species. Females usually leave their eggs behind for the males to look after. These fish originated in Europe, but they’ve been introduced to several places over the years. They’re most commonly found in freshwater rivers. Even though they’re an endangered species, many people still hunt and eat these fish.

77. Humboldt Penguin

Humboldt penguins swimming
  • Scientific Name: Spheniscus humboldti
  • Habitat: Western coast of South America
  • Size: 5 to 11 pounds
  • Diet: Fish, shrimp, krill

Humboldt penguins prefer a temperature much warmer than other well-known penguin species. They live near the coast of Peru and Chile, so their ideal temperatures are 71 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit. If the temperature gets too hot, they can “blush” to release extra heat from their bodies. When they do that, the pink, featherless areas of their face will turn red. They’re clumsy on land but agile in the water, swimming up to 30 miles per hour.

78. Hummingbird Hawk-Moth

Hummingbird Hawk-Moth feeding on flower
  • Scientific Name: Macroglossum stellatarum
  • Habitat: Gardens, parks, and meadows of Europe, Asia, and northern Africa
  • Size: 2 to 2.5 inches long
  • Diet: Nectar

These moths get their name because they look and act like hummingbirds. They can hover in one place for a while while they eat nectar from flowers, flapping their wings about 80 times per second. They use their long proboscis like a straw to suck nectar. There are myths that these moths will bite, but they’re harmless to humans. Some people mistake them for pests, but they actually help fertilize plants like honeybees do.

79. Humphead Wrasse

Humphead wrasse swimming
  • Scientific Name: Cheilinus undulatus
  • Habitat: Near coral reefs in the Indian Ocean
  • Size: 4 to 6.5 feet long, up to 400 pounds
  • Diet: Mollusks, crustaceans, echinoderms

Male humphead wrasses have a large hump on their foreheads while females lack a noticeable lump. It’s suspected that the bump is for males to show off how healthy they are to females. The most common nickname for their species is the Napoleon fish because their hump resembles the small hats that Napoleon Bonaparte wore. Humphead wrasses are important protectors of coral reefs because they eat some of the creatures that harm the coral.

80. Humpback Whale

Humpback whale swimming underwater
  • Scientific Name: Megaptera novaeangliae
  • Habitat: Across all major oceans
  • Size: 45 to 55 feet long, up to 40 tons
  • Diet: Plankton, crustaceans, small fish

A humpback whale’s senses have adapted to help them survive underwater. They have no sense of smell, and their tiny eyes can withstand the pressure of water. They spend 90% of their lives underwater, and they return to the surface every 7 to 15 minutes for air. These whales can live up to 90 years, and they have the longest migration pattern of any mammals, swimming 5,000 miles in one trip. Their distinctive sounds can be heard up to 20 miles away.

81. Hyacinth Macaw

Bright Blue Hyacinth Macaw
  • Scientific Name: Anodorhynchus hyacinthinus
  • Habitat: Outskirts of rainforests in central and eastern South America
  • Size: 2.6 to 3.7 pounds, about 3.3 feet long
  • Diet: Fruit, vegetables, nuts

Hyacinth macaws are the largest parrot species. They live in flocks of up to eight, and they remain bonded to their mates for their whole lives. They have loud calls, and they’re not afraid to screech if they sense danger. If they need to escape, they can fly up to 35 miles per hour. They’re intelligent birds that can learn to mimic human sounds well. They can be particular with their diets, so there are some nuts, such as palm nuts, that they will only eat after the food has passed through a cow’s digestive system.

Always More to Explore!

This list is just the beginning of the animals you can discover here, and it’s far from all the animals in the world. Every letter of the alphabet has endless animals to choose from, so if you’re curious, you can keep learning about incredible creatures as much as you’d like.