Endemic Animals of Ecuador








Marine Iguana
Marine Iguana
Marine iguanas are the only sea-going lizards in the world. They are usually black or gray but during the breeding period adult males gain green and red coloration. The dark skin pigment helps in shielding the animals from ultraviolet rays and also helps to warm their bodies. Young iguanas have a dorsal stripe of a lighter color. Their dorsal scales are a triangular shape and they have a long tail which propels them through water when swimming. ...
They are often encrusted with a white substance, which mainly consists of excess salt excreted via their nasal glands.
Discover more
Marine Iguana
Galápagos Penguin
Galápagos Penguin
The smallest warm-weather penguin, this bird has black plumage with the white colored frontal area as well as white spots around the body. The black head of Galápagos penguin features white markings on both sides of the head, stretching down from above each eye, circling back and descending to the neck. Below these head markings, the bird has a small collar of black colored feathers, fading away towards the back. Then, below this black collar, ...
the penguin has a white streak, extending across the length of the body, in both directions. And finally, the bird has a black band, stretching below and in parallel with the white streak. The feet of Galápagos penguin are dark and the beak is slender.
Discover more
Galápagos Penguin
Flightless Cormorant
Flightless Cormorant
Cormorants are water birds, largish, with elongated bodies, short legs that are set back, large, webbed feet, and long necks with long, hooked bills used for catching fish underwater. They can be difficult to spot when on the water’s surface, as they keep their body low, sometimes only their head and neck showing. They are rather ungainly on land, walking slowly and methodically. When returning to land after feeding at sea, they stretch out t ...
heir wings to dry. This cormorant is the only flightless one, and is the one variety of cormorant living on the Galápagos Islands. Males and females look similar, although males are usually much larger.
Discover more
Flightless Cormorant
Galapagos Hawk
Galapagos Hawk
The Galapagos hawk is a large rare raptor native to the Galapagos Islands. This beautiful bird is known for its fearlessness towards humans. Adult Galapagos hawks are generally sooty brownish-black in color with the crown being slightly blacker than the back. Their feathers of the mantle are partially edged with paler brown, grey, or buff, with their white bases showing to some extent. Their tail coverts are also barred with white. The tail ...
itself is silvery grey above, with about ten narrow black bars; below it is quite pale. The wing feathers are paler on inner webs, barred with white. The eyes are brown, the beak greyish black, paler at its base which is known as the 'cere', legs and feet are yellow. The males are smaller than the females, as with many birds of prey. Their young appear different from adults because they are darker and have camouflage which aids them in remaining protected from potential predators until they are fully grown.
Discover more
Galapagos Hawk
Galápagos Land Iguana
Galápagos Land Iguana
Galápagos land iguanas are large, yellow lizards, one of three species of land iguanas. Being cold-blooded, they absorb heat from the sun by basking on volcanic rock, and at night sleep in burrows to conserve their body heat. These iguanas also enjoy a symbiotic relationship with birds; the birds remove parasites and ticks, providing relief to the iguanas and food for the birds.
Discover more
Galápagos Land Iguana
Thomasomys ucucha
Thomasomys ucucha
Thomasomys ucucha, also known as the ucucha thomasomys, is a rodent in the genus Thomasomys of the family Cricetidae. It is known only from high altitude forest and grassland habitats in the Cordillera Oriental of Ecuador. Seven other species of Thomasomys live in the same areas. First collected in 1903, T. ucucha was formally described as a new species in 2003 and most closely resembles T. hylophilus, which occurs further to the north. The ...
species is listed as "vulnerable" in the IUCN Red List as a result of habitat destruction. Medium-sized, dark-furred, and long-tailed, T. ucucha can be distinguished from all other species of Thomasomys by its large, broad, procumbent upper incisors. Head and body length is 94 to 119 mm and body mass is 24 to 46 g . The tail is scarcely furred. The front part of the skull is flat, short, and broad. The incisive foramina, openings at the front of the palate, are short, and the palate itself is broad and smooth. The root of the lower incisor is contained in a prominent capsular process.
Discover more
Thomasomys ucucha
Vampire ground finch
Vampire ground finch
The vampire ground finch is a small bird native to the Galápagos Islands. It was considered a very distinct subspecies of the sharp-beaked ground finch endemic to Wolf and Darwin Islands. The International Ornithologists' Union has split the species supported by strong genetic evidence that they are not closely related, and divergences in morphology and song. Other taxonomic authorities still consider it conspecific.
Discover more
Vampire ground finch
Galapagos racer
Galapagos racer
The Galápagos racer is a colubrid snake in the genus Pseudalsophis that is endemic to the Galápagos Islands. It is a mildly venomous constrictor but it is not considered aggressive or harmful to humans. The two subspecies are the eastern and western racers, the latter being larger, longer, and darker than the former. The western subspecies specializes in hunting fish, while both subspecies eat small reptiles, eggs, rodents, and bird hatchlings. T ...
he Galapagos racer is near threatened due to recently introduced species that feed on snake eggs, including pigs, rats, mice, and cats. It is one of only three species of snakes on the Galápagos Islands, and it was first described in 1860. In November 2016, a video clip from the BBC series Planet Earth II showing a group of Galápagos racers hunting marine iguana hatchlings became a viral trend.
Discover more
Galapagos racer
Hood mockingbird
Hood mockingbird
The Hood mockingbird, also known as the Española mockingbird, is a species of bird in the family Mimidae. It is endemic to Española Island in the Galápagos Islands, Ecuador, and it is one of four closely related mockingbird species endemic to the Galápagos archipelago. It is found in dry forests and is omnivorous, though it primarily is a carnivore or scavenger. The species has a highly territorial social structure and has no fear of humans. It is ...
the only species of Galápagos mockingbird that Charles Darwin did not see or collect on the voyage of the Beagle.
Discover more
Hood mockingbird
Medium ground finch
Medium ground finch
The medium ground finch is a species of bird in the family Thraupidae. It is endemic to the Galapagos Islands. Its primary natural habitat is tropical shrubland. One of Darwin's finches, the species was the first which scientists have observed evolving in real-time. The population of medium ground finches has been experiencing inbreeding depression due to small population numbers. Inbreeding depression occurs when there is a decrease in fitness ...
due to individuals mating with genetic relatives. Typically, this leads to a loss of genetic diversity and a reduction in heterozygosity.
Discover more
Medium ground finch
Conolophus marthae
Conolophus marthae
Conolophus marthae, the Galápagos pink land iguana, is a species of lizard of the family Iguanidae. This critically endangered iguana is native only to the Wolf Volcano in northern Isabela Island of the Galápagos . It has a pink body with some dark stripes, prompting some to call it the pink iguana or the Galápagos rosy iguana. The species was first discovered in 1986 and was identified as a separate species, distinct from the Galápagos land igu ...
ana, early in 2009. This species is the only example of ancient diversification in the genus Conolophus and is one of the oldest events of divergence ever recorded in the Galápagos.
Discover more
Conolophus marthae
Large ground finch
Large ground finch
The large ground finch is a species of bird. One of Darwin's finches, it is now placed in the family Thraupidae and was formerly in the Emberizidae. It is endemic to the Galapagos Islands, and is found in the arid zone of most of the archipelago, though it is absent from the southeastern islands . It is the largest species of Darwin's finch both in total size and size of beak. It has a large, short beak for cracking nuts to get food.
Discover more
Large ground finch
Woodpecker finch
Woodpecker finch
The woodpecker finch is a monomorphic species of bird in the Darwin's finch group of the tanager family, Thraupidae. They are a non-migratory species and are endemic to the Galapagos Islands. The diet of a woodpecker finch revolves mostly around invertebrates, but also encompasses a variety of seeds. Woodpecker finches, like many other species of birds, form breeding pairs and care for young until they have fledged. The most distinctive ...
characteristic of woodpecker finches is their ability to use tools to for foraging. This behaviour indicates that they have highly specialized cognitive abilities. Woodpecker finches have also shown the ability to learn new behaviours regarding tool use via social learning. Not all populations of woodpecker finches use tools equally as often, as this is influenced by the environment in which they live.
Discover more
Woodpecker finch
Phantasmal poison frog
Phantasmal poison frog
The phantasmal poison frog or phantasmal poison-arrow frog is a species of poison dart frog. It is endemic to Ecuador and known from the Andean slopes of the central Ecuador in Bolívar Province. They have radiant colors. This species is endangered, and there are only a few locations in the wild where they are known to live.
Discover more
Phantasmal poison frog
Floreana mockingbird
Floreana mockingbird
The Floreana mockingbird or the Charles Island mockingbird, is a species of bird in the family Mimidae. It was endemic to Floreana, one of the Galápagos Islands, but now is found only on two nearby islets, Campeón and Gardner-near-Floreana. The Floreana mockingbird is also known as Darwin's mockingbird, as it was the arguable inspiration for Charles Darwin's work on the origins of species; he noticed distinct differences between them and p ...
revious species he had encountered and consequently established the existence of other variants on neighboring islands.
Discover more
Floreana mockingbird
Green warbler-finch
Green warbler-finch
The green warbler-finch is a species of bird, one of Darwin's finches in the tanager family Thraupidae. Sometimes classified in the family Emberizidae, more recent studies have shown it to belong in the tanager family.
Discover more
Green warbler-finch
Small tree finch
Small tree finch
The small tree finch is a species of bird in the Darwin's finch group of the tanager family Thraupidae. It has a grasping beak with curved culmens. Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical dry forests and subtropical or tropical dry shrubland. During the non-breeding season it is known to form large groups with small ground-finches. It is an endemic species to the Galapagos islands and its conservation status has been listed as “Least C ...
oncern”. However, bird counts which have been conducted since 1997 have shown a continuous decline in small tree-finch populations in the Scalesia and agricultural zones of Santa Cruz, where the small tree-finch is most abundant. Small tree-finch counts have remained stable in the transition zone and in the less popular dry and fern zones on Santa Cruz island. A recent study has found that this species is in particularly impacted by the larvae of the parasitic avian vampire fly, Philornis downsi.
Discover more
Small tree finch
Lava heron
Lava heron
The lava heron, also known as the Galápagos heron, is a species of heron endemic to the Galápagos Islands of Ecuador. It is considered by some authorities — including the American Ornithological Society and BirdLife International — to be a subspecies of the striated heron, and was formerly "lumped" with this species and the green heron as the green-backed heron.
Discover more
Lava heron
Vegetarian finch
Vegetarian finch
The vegetarian finch is a species of bird in the Darwin's finch group of the tanager family Thraupidae. It is the only member of the genus Platyspiza. It is endemic to the Galápagos Islands. Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical dry forests and subtropical or tropical moist montane forests.
Discover more
Vegetarian finch
Small ground finch
Small ground finch
The small ground finch is a species of bird in the tanager family Thraupidae. Endemic to the Galápagos Islands, it is common and widespread in shrubland, woodland, and other habitats on most islands in the archipelago. It commonly feeds on small seeds and parasites from the skins of Galápagos land and marine iguanas and Galápagos tortoises.
Discover more
Small ground finch
Lilacine amazon
Lilacine amazon
The lilacine amazon or Ecuadorian red-lored amazon is an amazon parrot native to Ecuador in South America. According to the IOC World Bird List, it is still considered to be a subspecies of the red-lored amazon, although Birdlife International considers it to be a separate species, as Amazona lilacina - as does the International Union for Conservation of Nature for the purposes of the IUCN Red List, rating the lilacine amazon as critically ...
endangered. The lilacine amazon is generally smaller than its related subspecies, with a black beak and more subdued coloring. Lilacine amazons are said to make favorable companion parrots because of their gentle, affectionate nature and agreeable temperament.
Discover more
Lilacine amazon
Medium tree finch
Medium tree finch
The medium tree finch is a critically endangered species of bird in the Darwin's finch group of the tanager family Thraupidae. It is endemic to the Galápagos Islands where it is only found on Floreana Island. Its name is derived from the fact that the bird's beak is intermediate in size between that of the small tree finch and the large tree finch. Because it has a very small range on a single island, and because of the introduction of a ...
parasitic fly which kills the nestlings, the International Union for Conservation of Nature has rated the medium tree finch as "critically endangered".
Discover more
Medium tree finch
El Oro parakeet
El Oro parakeet
The El Oro parakeet, conure D'Orcès, cotorra de El Oro, or perico de El Oro is a species of parrot in the family Psittacidae, endemic to Ecuador. It is a relatively newly identified species, having been discovered in 1980. Little is currently known about it.
Discover more
El Oro parakeet
Black-breasted puffleg
Black-breasted puffleg
The black-breasted puffleg is a species of hummingbird native to Ecuador. It is Endangered, with less than 300 individuals remaining in the wild.
Discover more
Black-breasted puffleg
Galápagos shearwater
Galápagos shearwater
The Galápagos shearwater is a small shearwater. Until recently it was considered to be a subspecies of Audubon's shearwater, but it is actually one of two members of a very ancient lineage of the small Puffinus species, the other being, as indicated by mtDNA cytochrome b sequence data, the Christmas shearwater. It is an endemic breeder of the Galápagos Islands, and is largely sedentary, although individuals are commonly seen as far as the O ...
axacan coast of Mexico.
Discover more
Galápagos shearwater
Galápagos martin
Galápagos martin
The Galápagos martin is a species of bird in the family Hirundinidae, endemic to the Galápagos Islands.
Discover more
Galápagos martin
White-breasted parakeet
White-breasted parakeet
The white-breasted parakeet or white-necked parakeet is a species of parrot in the family Psittacidae. It is found in southern Ecuador and adjacent northern Peru. Its natural habitat is subtropical or tropical moist montane forests. It is threatened by habitat loss.
Discover more
White-breasted parakeet
Lava gull
Lava gull
The lava gull, also known as the dusky gull, is a medium-sized gull and a member of the "hooded gull" group. It is most closely related to the Laughing gull and Franklin's gull and is the rarest gull in the world. It is endemic to the Galapagos Islands.
Discover more
Lava gull
Common cactus finch
Common cactus finch
The common cactus finch or small cactus finch is a species of bird in the Darwin's finch group of the tanager family Thraupidae. It is endemic to the Galapagos Islands, where it is found on most islands, with the notable exception of Fernandina, Española, Genovesa, Darwin and Wolf. Most of these islands are inhabited by its close relative, the Española cactus finch.
Discover more
Common cactus finch
Galápagos mockingbird
Galápagos mockingbird
The Galápagos mockingbird is a species of bird in the family Mimidae. It is endemic to the Galápagos Islands, Ecuador.
Discover more
Galápagos mockingbird
Sharp-beaked ground finch
Sharp-beaked ground finch
The sharp-beaked ground finch is a species of bird in the Darwin's finch group of the tanager family Thraupidae. It is classified as a least-concern species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and it is native to the Galápagos Islands in Ecuador. It has a mass of around 20 grams and the males have black plumage, while females have streaked brown plumage. This finch was described by Richard Bowdler Sharpe in 1888.
Discover more
Sharp-beaked ground finch
Mangrove finch
Mangrove finch
The mangrove finch is a species of bird in the Darwin's finch group of the tanager family Thraupidae. It is endemic to the Galápagos Islands. It was found on the islands of Fernandina and Isabela, but recent surveys have failed to record the species on Fernandina. It has been classified as critically endangered by BirdLife International, with an estimated population of between 60 and 140 located in two large mangroves on Isabela. A study has ...
shown that the two small populations remaining on Isabela Island have begun undergoing speciation and that one or both populations will eventually become extinct due to a lack of interbreeding.
Discover more
Mangrove finch
Grey warbler-finch
Grey warbler-finch
The grey warbler-finch is a species of bird, one of Darwin's finches in the tanager family Thraupidae. Sometimes classified in the family Emberizidae, more recent studies have shown it to belong in the tanager family. It is endemic to the Galápagos Islands, Ecuador.
Discover more
Grey warbler-finch
Large tree finch
Large tree finch
The large tree finch is a species of bird in the Darwin's finch group of the tanager family Thraupidae. It is endemic to the Galapagos Islands.
Discover more
Large tree finch
San Cristóbal mockingbird
San Cristóbal mockingbird
The San Cristóbal mockingbird or Chatham mockingbird, is a species of bird in the family Mimidae. It is endemic to San Cristóbal Island in the Galápagos Islands.
Discover more
San Cristóbal mockingbird
Blue-throated hillstar
Blue-throated hillstar
The blue-throated hillstar is a hummingbird found only in a small portion of the southwestern Andes in Ecuador. It was discovered in 2017.
Discover more
Blue-throated hillstar
Galapagos crake
Galapagos crake
The Galapagos crake or Galapagos rail is a small rail endemic to the Galapagos Islands. It resembles its sister species, the black rail of The Americas, from which it diverged 1.2 million years ago. It is threatened by introduced species, such as goats and cats, and is considered vulnerable.
Discover more
Galapagos crake
Esmeraldas woodstar
Esmeraldas woodstar
The Esmeraldas woodstar is a rare, neotropical species of hummingbird in the family Trochilidae. There are six different species in the woodstar genus. Most of them are poorly studied due to their small size, extremely similar resemblance to each other, and rarity. Esmeraldas woodstars are one of the smallest bird species. They are sexually dimorphic. The main difference between sexes is that males have a bright purple throat. Esmeraldas ...
woodstars are found only on the Pacific coast of west Ecuador in semi-deciduous to evergreen forests. They feed on the nectar of flowering shrubs and trees. The main threat to this species is deforestation. Esmeraldas woodstars are Vulnerable and require habitat protection.
Discover more
Esmeraldas woodstar
Galapagos flycatcher
Galapagos flycatcher
The Galápagos flycatcher also known as the large-billed flycatcher is a species of bird in the family Tyrannidae. It is endemic to the Galápagos Islands, where it is present on all the main islands. Its local name is 'Papamoscas'. The species was once placed in its own genus, Eribates, based upon a supposed "very long tarsus".
Discover more
Galapagos flycatcher
Darwin's flycatcher
Darwin's flycatcher
Darwin's flycatcher or little vermilion flycatcher is a species of flycatcher, closely related to the vermilion flycatcher. It is endemic to the Galápagos Islands. The taxon was described as full species Pyrocephalus dubius by John Gould in 1838. The same threats that led to the San Cristóbal flycatcher's extinction, including invasive species such as rats, threaten the Darwin's flycatcher today. Populations on the islands of Santa Cruz, F ...
ernandina, Rabida and Isabela. It lives in humid forests and shrubland. They have an average lifespan of 5 years.
Discover more
Darwin's flycatcher
1 - 40 out of 219 LOAD MORE