7 junio, 2024

20 Animals of the Sierra of Peru

Between the animals of the Sierra del Peru The most important are the condor of the Andes, the Peruvian rupicola, camelids or rodents. The mountainous region of the country is known as the Peruvian Sierra, made up of the high and low Andes mountains. Together with the Amazon region and the coastal deserts, it constitutes in itself one of the natural habitats of Peru.

The sierra is divided into different sections, each one of them has a particular fauna and flora that has adapted to the different environmental conditions. In this way, some species of animals have managed to adapt to survive at great heights above sea level, such as birds, rodents and camelids.

The condor of the Andes can be seen frequently from the mountains. It flies majestically in search of its prey from the highest parts of the Andes. However, the most famous bird of the Peruvian highlands is the Rupícola, an emblematic Peruvian bird with reddish and black fur.

Most of the species that inhabit the Andes have thick and resistant fur, which allows them to store the temperature and survive the frosts that take place during the nights in the mountains. They also have flexible joints to walk on rocks and other physical traits to protect themselves from predators.

Four different types of camelids can be found in the mountains. Among these, the llama and the alpaca stand out for being animals used in the mountains as pack animals, meat and wool producers since pre-Inca times.

List of animals of the Sierra del Peru

1- Condor of the Andes

The Andean condor is the largest flying bird in the world, with a wingspan of up to 3.8 meters and an approximate weight of 15 kilograms. This species looks for windy areas in the highlands of Peru that help it support its weight during flight, gliding with the air currents in its favor (Barry Walker, 2007).

In Peru they are sighted in the Cocahuasi and Colca canyons, located in the province of Arequipa. However, it is possible to see them in coastal areas where the sea breezes can help them during the flight.

2- Peruvian Rupicola

The Peruvian rupicola is a national animal of Peru. With a height of 30 centimeters and the ability to fly more than 2,500 meters high.

This bird will hardly be seen flying over the Andes, since it tends to look for wooded or rocky areas that are difficult to access to locate itself. It is easily recognized by its reddish-orange and black plumage (Olmstead, 2017).

3- The Guanaco

This animal is one of the four camelids that can be found in the Peruvian highlands. It is found mostly in the wild and is estimated to be the oldest species in the camelid genus.

It can reach 1.1 meters in height, its legs are thin and agile, its fur is dense and messy. It is estimated that in Peru there are currently less than 1000 specimens of this species, placing it in a state of risk.

4- Call

The llama is a species of camelid that inhabits the Andes and can be commonly found in the Peruvian highlands.

It is believed that the llama is a species descended from the wild guanaco that was domesticated by the Incas around the year 4,000 BC, as a pack animal capable of supporting long journeys up and down the sierra (Cermal-Editions, 2014).

They are characterized by being able to adapt to the difficult conditions of the Andean soil. In this way, they can live in grassy areas at more than 4,000 meters above sea level (masl), where the air only has 40% oxygen, the climate is cold and dry, and the only source of food is the grass.

5 – Alpaca

The alpaca is a type of llama that can be easily found in the Peruvian highland region. It is smaller than the llama and is capable of carrying more than 150 kilos of weight, which makes it an excellent Andean transport animal. Some people believe that the alpaca is a cross between the llama and the vicuña (Martina Gerken, 2008).

Alpacas can live at more than 4,500 meters above sea level for a period of up to 30 years. Their thick fur helps them withstand the cold climate of the Andes, and their long necks help them spot predators behind rocks at a long distance.

For the Incas, alpacas were a luxury item, thus their wealth was measured by the number of alpacas they could have.

With the arrival of the Spanish, many alpacas died, and a few were kept by the Incas in the highest parts of the Andes. If this had not been the case, it is likely that alpacas would be extinct today (C, 2001).

6 – Vicuna

The vicuña is the smallest known camelid species in the world. It is believed to be the wild ancestor of the alpaca. It only inhabits the grassy areas of the Andes in southern Peru and northern Chile.

Although the vicuña looks fragile, it is highly resistant and its body can withstand extreme heights. It has incredibly thick and soft fur that traps warm air between its layers, preventing its body from freezing at night or when temperatures are very low.

As if they were rodents, the lower incisors of the vicuñas do not stop growing, in this way, they can chew the tough grasses of the Andes without suffering damage or wear. On the other hand, they have a special joint in the legs, which allows them to adapt to uneven floors without slipping.

7- Chinchilla

In the wild, chinchillas can be found in the Andes region, however, being an endangered species, it is not easy to spot them. Its fur is soft and gray with black stripes.

It usually lives in clans of up to 100 individuals, where there are no dominant males or females that lead the group. A chinchilla can live up to eight years in the wild.

They are nocturnal animals with dense fur, adapted to withstand the cold. They have the ability to jump, cling, and climb rocks to protect themselves from predators. In this way, they can survive in the wild. However, its biggest predator is humans, who poach it for its fur.

8- Vizcacha

This rodent is known as the vizcacha of the Andes and is related to the chinchilla. It can be found throughout the entire Peruvian highlands. Their fur is thick and soft, except on the tail, where it gets hard.

This rodent looks similar to a rabbit, with long ears covered with fur. Its fur is usually gray and its tail is long with a few hairs at the tip.

9- The guinea pig

This rodent is native to the Andean region and can be found in Peru, Colombia, and Venezuela. It has been bred for more than 500 years for human consumption and receives different names depending on the place where it is raised.

The Incas already consumed this rodent as part of their diet with preparation techniques borrowed from other cultures.

10- Spectacled Bear

The spectacled bear is the only species of bear that is not extinct in South America. It can be found throughout the Andes mountain range in forested areas, reaching a height between 500 and 2,700 meters above sea level within the Peruvian highlands.

This bear is medium in size, which does not allow it to exceed two meters in height. Its weight can reach 200 kilograms and its fur is black and thick, except around its eyes, where white lines can be seen.

11- I blame

The culpeo is a wild dog that inhabits the Andes in small herds with a hierarchical and matriarchal structure, this means that it is the females that must fight and defend their territory. This means that the females always feed first and have exclusive mating rights.

This dog is of medium size, with an approximate weight of 7 to 12 kilograms. It feeds on rabbits, rodents, insects, berries, and birds. Currently, the culpeos are not considered at risk, however, their habitat is being severely destroyed (everything, 2011).

12- Cougar

The two great carnivores of the Andes are the Puma and the Jaguar. The puma usually hunts at a higher altitude than the jaguar, which prefers to enter the humid and dense forests located in the valleys of the mountains.

A puma can weigh between 50 and 100 kilograms and reach a height of 60 to 90 centimeters at the shoulders and a length of 2.4 meters from nose to tail.

13- Jaguar

The jaguar is the largest cat in the Americas and has a behavior similar to that of the tiger, since it enjoys swimming and is a solitary hunter. It is the cat with the strongest bite, being able to pierce the shell of a turtle without problems.

14- Andean marmoset monkey

The Andean marmoset is an endemic species of Peru. It is found in the lower parts of the sierra, at a height of 750 to 950 meters above sea level. It is considered one of the species at high risk of extinction. During the last 25 years, 80% of its population has disappeared.

15- Andean mountain cat

This cat can live at altitudes of 3,500 and 4,800 meters in the Andes. It is one of the shyest cats and the least known. There is no specimen of this animal that lives in captivity and it is believed to be in critical danger of extinction. Its fur is soft and thick and its size is similar to that of a domestic cat.

16- Hummingbird from Puno

This small bird measures approximately 13 centimeters. The males have a different plumage than the females, their throat is bright light green and their chest is white. The female has a mottled throat. Her bill is black and slightly curved.

17- Fucking

The chingue is part of the mephitid family, it is also known as yaguané, skunk or skunk. It is characterized by having a thin body with abundant fur. It stands out for being black and having a clear white dorsal.

They have anal glands that secrete a foul-smelling substance when threatened. This substance can reach up to 2 meters away and the duration of the odor is up to a month. They are omnivorous animals, they feed on insects, fruits, eggs, small animals and honey.

18- Peruvian white-tailed deer

This mammal is characterized by having a coat between gray and brown, it does not change depending on the season of the year. The lower part of its tail is white and works as an alarm signal.

The male is the one with antlers, which he renews annually. It feeds on leaves, shoots, fruits, seeds and mushrooms. They are distributed in different biomes such as the equatorial dry forest, steppe mountain range and the páramo.

19- Taruca

Also known as Andean deer or northern huemul. Their fur is thick, does not change with the seasons, and ranges from sandy gray to greyish brown.

Its natural habitat is puna grasslands, mountains, and rocky slopes with little vegetation at high altitudes. The taruca is a herbivorous animal, it is currently considered an endangered species and is classified as internationally vulnerable.

20- Andean tinamo

It is a generally running bird, also known as the inambú wigeon or mountain partridge. Its size varies between 25 and 30 centimeters. Its plumage has a…

Deja una respuesta

Tu dirección de correo electrónico no será publicada. Los campos obligatorios están marcados con *