country

Animals of Egypt

634 species

The wildlife of Egypt is composed of the flora and fauna of this country in northeastern Africa and southwestern Asia, and is substantial and varied. Apart from the fertile Nile Valley, which bisects the country from south to north, the majority of Egypt's landscape is desert, with a few scattered oases. It has long coastlines on the Mediterranean Sea, the Gulf of Suez, the Gulf of Aqaba and the Red Sea. Each geographic region has a diversity of plants and animals each adapted to its own particular habitat.

At one time Egypt had a cooler, wetter climate than it has today; ancient tomb paintings show giraffes, hippopotamuses, crocodiles and ostriches, and the petroglyphs at Silwa Bahari on the upper Nile, between Luxor and Aswan, show African bush elephants, white rhinoceroses, gerenuk and more ostriches, a fauna akin to that of present-day East Africa.[10] Nor does the country have many endemic species, these being limited to the Egyptian weasel, pallid gerbil, Mackilligin's gerbil (this may possibly extend into the Sudan), Flower's shrew, Nile Delta toad, and two butterflies, the Sinai baton blue and Satyrium jebelia.

Mammals of the Western Desert have been depleted over the years and the addax and scimitar oryx are no longer found there, and the Atlas lion has probably gone as well. The remaining mammals include the rhim gazelle, dorcas gazelle, Barbary sheep, Rüppell's fox, lesser Egyptian jerboa and Giza gerbil. Notable birds from this desert include the spotted sandgrouse, greater hoopoe-lark and white-crowned wheatear.

The Eastern Desert has a quite different range of fauna and has much in common with the Sinai Peninsula, showing the importance of the broad Nile in separating the two desert regions. Here are found the striped hyena, Nubian ibex, bushy-tailed jird, golden spiny mouse, Blanford's fox and Rüppell's fox. The sand partridge, streaked scrub warbler, mourning wheatear and white-crowned wheatear are typical of this region. The high rocky mountains of Gebel Elba in the south have a distinctive range of animals including the aardwolf, striped polecat, and common genet, and there may still be African wild ass in this area.

Birds are abundant in Egypt, especially in the Nile Valley and the Delta region. Birds of prey include vultures, eagles, hawks, falcons and owls. Other large birds include storks, flamingoes, herons, egrets, pelicans, quail, sunbirds and golden orioles. About four hundred and eighty species of bird have been recorded, the globally endangered ones being the red-breasted goose, white-headed duck, Balearic shearwater, Egyptian vulture, Rüppell's vulture, sociable lapwing, slender-billed curlew, saker falcon and yellow-breasted bunting. Egypt is on a major bird migratory route between Eurasia and East Africa and around two hundred species of migrants pass through twice a year.

About thirty species of snake occur in Egypt, about half of them venomous. These include the Egyptian cobra, false smooth snake and horned viper. There are also numerous species of lizards.[9] Above the Aswan Dam, the shores of Lake Nasser are largely barren, but the lake does support the last remaining Nile crocodiles and African softshell turtle in Egypt.

Over one hundred species of fish live in the Nile and the Delta region. Egypt also has a large aquaculture industry producing tilapia in semi-intensive pond systems.

Another animal possibly related to Egypt is the Egyptian Mau.

The wildlife of Egypt is composed of the flora and fauna of this country in northeastern Africa and southwestern Asia, and is substantial and varied. Apart from the fertile Nile Valley, which bisects the country from south to north, the majority of Egypt's landscape is desert, with a few scattered oases. It has long coastlines on the Mediterranean Sea, the Gulf of Suez, the Gulf of Aqaba and the Red Sea. Each geographic region has a diversity of plants and animals each adapted to its own particular habitat.

At one time Egypt had a cooler, wetter climate than it has today; ancient tomb paintings show giraffes, hippopotamuses, crocodiles and ostriches, and the petroglyphs at Silwa Bahari on the upper Nile, between Luxor and Aswan, show African bush elephants, white rhinoceroses, gerenuk and more ostriches, a fauna akin to that of present-day East Africa.[10] Nor does the country have many endemic species, these being limited to the Egyptian weasel, pallid gerbil, Mackilligin's gerbil (this may possibly extend into the Sudan), Flower's shrew, Nile Delta toad, and two butterflies, the Sinai baton blue and Satyrium jebelia.

Mammals of the Western Desert have been depleted over the years and the addax and scimitar oryx are no longer found there, and the Atlas lion has probably gone as well. The remaining mammals include the rhim gazelle, dorcas gazelle, Barbary sheep, Rüppell's fox, lesser Egyptian jerboa and Giza gerbil. Notable birds from this desert include the spotted sandgrouse, greater hoopoe-lark and white-crowned wheatear.

The Eastern Desert has a quite different range of fauna and has much in common with the Sinai Peninsula, showing the importance of the broad Nile in separating the two desert regions. Here are found the striped hyena, Nubian ibex, bushy-tailed jird, golden spiny mouse, Blanford's fox and Rüppell's fox. The sand partridge, streaked scrub warbler, mourning wheatear and white-crowned wheatear are typical of this region. The high rocky mountains of Gebel Elba in the south have a distinctive range of animals including the aardwolf, striped polecat, and common genet, and there may still be African wild ass in this area.

Birds are abundant in Egypt, especially in the Nile Valley and the Delta region. Birds of prey include vultures, eagles, hawks, falcons and owls. Other large birds include storks, flamingoes, herons, egrets, pelicans, quail, sunbirds and golden orioles. About four hundred and eighty species of bird have been recorded, the globally endangered ones being the red-breasted goose, white-headed duck, Balearic shearwater, Egyptian vulture, Rüppell's vulture, sociable lapwing, slender-billed curlew, saker falcon and yellow-breasted bunting. Egypt is on a major bird migratory route between Eurasia and East Africa and around two hundred species of migrants pass through twice a year.

About thirty species of snake occur in Egypt, about half of them venomous. These include the Egyptian cobra, false smooth snake and horned viper. There are also numerous species of lizards.[9] Above the Aswan Dam, the shores of Lake Nasser are largely barren, but the lake does support the last remaining Nile crocodiles and African softshell turtle in Egypt.

Over one hundred species of fish live in the Nile and the Delta region. Egypt also has a large aquaculture industry producing tilapia in semi-intensive pond systems.

Another animal possibly related to Egypt is the Egyptian Mau.