Animals That Start With A: List With Pictures & Interesting Facts

Mice, aardvarks, African bush elephants, Arctic foxes, and aye-aye are among the species that begin with A. Reptiles like alligators and anacondas are amphibians like axolotls and birds such as albatrosses and auks.

Beginning with A, you’ll meet a variety of intriguing animals on this page, along with images and information about each species.

You can access more information, photos, and videos by clicking on the animal’s links below it.

Individual animals (such as the African wild dog) and well-known groupings of animals (such as angel sharks) are included in this list.

Each of the separate species has its scientific name and conservation status listed.

Use the index below to go directly to a particular animal, or scroll down to see pictures and facts on all of the animals.


Scientific name: Orycteropus afer

Type of animal: Mammal

Family: Orycteropodidae

Where found: Africa

Conservation status: Least Concern

The aardvark is guaranteed to come first in any list of animals that begin with A. In sub-Saharan Africa (the region south of the Sahara desert), the aardvark is a nocturnal, digging animal that may be found in savannas, grasslands, and forests.

The aardvark eats almost entirely ants and termites, although it also consumes the aardvark cucumber, a fruit that it aids to spread. The aardvark is a skilled excavator with strong legs and claws.

In Afrikaans, a language widely spoken in southern Africa, the name “aardvark” means “earth pig.” The aardvark is not related to pigs, despite its name. In reality, a group of creatures called Afrotheria developed in Africa and are the species’ closest cousins. Elephants, manatees, and tenrecs are among the animals in this group.


Scientific name: Proteles cristata

Type of animal: Mammal

Family: Hyaenidae

Where found: Africa

Conservation status: Least Concern

The hyena family, Hyaenidae, contains four species: aardwolf, hyena, lion, and leopard.

The aardwolf does not pursue big prey, whether by hunting or scavenging, unlike the other hyenas (the spotted, striped, and brown hyena). Instead, it eats termites and other tiny insects as a specialist insectivore (insect-eater).

An aardwolf may eat up to a quarter of a million termites in one night, according to its long, sticky tongue.

In southern and eastern Africa, the aardwolf can be found in grasslands and savannas.

Adélie Penguin

Scientific name: Pygoscelis adeliae

Type of animal: Bird

Family: Spheniscidae

Where found: Antarctica

Conservation status: Least Concern

The Adélie penguin is a mid-sized penguin found in Antarctica that is identified by a distinctive white eye ring. The penguin is the most widely distributed species on the continent because it can be found along its entire coast.

Every year, while migrating between its feeding and breeding grounds, the Adélie Penguin travels up to 8,000 miles across the ice.

Adélie Land, an area of Antarctica named after Adèle, wife of French explorer Jules Dumont d’Urville, was the inspiration for the species’ name. The penguin was also discovered by Jules Dumont d’Urville

African Bush Elephant

Scientific name: Loxodonta africana

Type of animal: Mammal

Family: Elephantidae

Where found: Africa

Conservation status: Endangered

The African bush elephant is the world’s biggest land animal, reaching a height of nearly 4 meters (13.12 feet) and weighing over 10 metric tons (22,046 pounds).

The other species of elephant found in Africa is the smaller African forest elephant, and the African bush elephant is one of them.

(Asia is home to the Asian elephant, a third elephant species.)

The African bush elephant is endangered due to both illegal poaching and habitat destruction, and was classified as an endangered species by the IUCN in 2021.

African Clawed Frog

Scientific name: Xenopus laevis

Type of animal: Amphibian

Family: Pipidae

Where found: Africa

Conservation status: Least Concern

In streams, ponds, and lakes across much of sub-Saharan Africa, the African clawed frog is a common amphibian.

This ancient frog uses its claws on its feet to crush apart its meals because it lacks teeth or an extendable tongue.

A carnivore, the African clawed frog eats either prey or carrion. Almost anything it can fit in its mouth will be eaten.

African Grey Parrot

Scientific name: Psittacus erithacus

Type of animal: Bird

Family: Psittacidae

Where found: Africa

Conservation status: Endangered

African grey parrots reared in captivity have acquired over 100 words, making them a species of parrot noted for its great intelligence.

The African grey parrot, despite being a popular pet, is now considered endangered in the wild. The species’ main dangers are illegal pet trade trapping and habitat destruction.

Dense woods are home to the African grey parrot. During the day, it forages in groups of up to 30 individuals and is primarily a frugivore (fruit eater). It roosts in bigger groups at night.

African Wild Dog

Scientific name: Lycaon pictus
Type of animal: Mammal
Family: Canidae
Where found: Africa
Conservation status: Endangered

The African wild dog is the largest wild canid (canidae) in Africa, with a richly colored orange, brown, and white coat. It is also known as the “painted dog.”

The species, which lives and hunt in groups of four to nine adults, is highly sociable. African wild dogs eat mostly medium-sized antelope as their primary prey. Their prey is chased until it is out of energy.

The African wild dog lives in scrublands and savannas, where it battles lions and hyenas for food. The African wild dog will be dominated by both of these bigger predators, who will either attack it or steal its food.

Airedale Terrier

Scientific name: Canis familiaris /Canis lupus familiaris

Type of animal: Mammal

Family: Canidae

Conservation status: Domestic

The Yorkshire, England, origins of the Airedale terrier are a domestic dog breed. It is a big terrier that was developed to hunt badgers and other medium-sized prey.

Alaskan Malamute

Scientific name: Canis familiaris /Canis lupus familiaris

Type of animal: Mammal

Family: Canidae

Conservation status: Domestic

The origins of the Alaskan malamute, a huge household dog breed indigenous to the extreme north, where it was developed as a sled dog, can be traced back to its homeland. It looks similar to Siberian Husky, which was developed for speed rather than strength, but it is bigger.


Albatrosses are a group of large seabirds that belongs to the Diomedeidae family.

The wandering albatross, with a wingspan of up to 3.5 m / 11 ft 6 in, is one of the best-known albatross species. It is one of 22 albatross species (the precise number of albatross species is debatable).

Albatrosses are outstanding flyers because of their lengthy, narrow wings. Albatrosses are known to cover 120,000 kilometers (over 75,000 miles) each year.

Albatrosses are extremely long-lived, with many wild individuals living over 50 years.

Wisdom, a Laysan albatross, is the world’s oldest wild bird. She is at least 70 years old, as of the year 2022. She has traveled over 3 million miles (4.8 million kilometers) during her lifetime.

Alligator Snapping Turtle

Scientific name: Macrochelys temminckii

Type of animal: Reptile

Family: Chelydridae

Where found: North America

Conservation status: Vulnerable

In rivers in the southeast of the United States, the alligator snapping turtle lives. With enormous individuals weighing up to 176 pounds / 80 kilograms and a carapace (shell) length of 2.6 feet / 80 centimeters, it is the biggest freshwater turtle found in the United States. Individuals weighing more than 220 pounds / 100 kilograms are exceptionally large.

The powerful bite and ridges on the shell of the alligator snapping turtle give it its name, which is similar to an alligator’s.

The carnivorous nature of this US reptile It uses its tongue to capture prey, which is shaped like a worn appendage. The alligator snapping turtle preys on a wide range of other creatures, including young alligators and other turtles, and is not picky about what it eats.


Scientific name: Lama pacos

Type of animal: Mammal

Family: Camelidae

Where found: Originated in South America

Conservation status: Domestic

(The Camelidae family also includes the Bactrian camel, wild Bactrian camel, dromedary, llama, vicuña, and guanaco.) Alpaca is one of seven living species of camels.

Camelids are the name given to members of this family.

Alpacas are smaller than llamas (the two species may hybridize) and resemble a small, hump-less camel. It was domesticated thousands of years ago in South America and is now grown globally. The fleece is the primary reason it is bred.

American Alligator

Alligator mississippiensis is the scientific name for this species.

The other alligator species, the smaller and much more endangered Chinese alligator, is one of just two in North America.

The caimans of Central and South America are all members of the Alligatoridae family, which includes both alligators. The Crocodilia order, which also includes crocodiles, includes the family.

The American alligator is a predatory, semiaquatic reptile like other crocodilians. In the southeastern United States, this species lives in rivers, lakes, and swamps. It’s an apex predator that doesn’t have any natural predators of its own and grows up to 16 feet (5 meters) long.

Amur Leopard

Scientific name: Panthera pardus orientalis

There are eight different subspecies (types) of leopard that have been identified so far. Southeastern Russia and northern China are home to this species. It has a thicker coat than other leopard subspecies because of its habitat, which is usually cold and snow-covered.

The Amur leopard subspecies is classified as “Critically Endangered,” despite the fact that it has the conservation classification of “Vulnerable.” According to a 2015 research, there are fewer than 60 Amur leopards remaining in the wild.

Habitat loss is the greatest threat to the Amur leopard. The available prey in the cat’s woodland area has decreased as its forest environment has been converted to farmland. The population of the Amur leopard is rapidly dwindling.


The genus Eunectes is a reptile found in South America.

The green, yellow, darkly-spotted, and Bolivian anaconda are the four species of anaconda. The genus Eunectes, which belongs to the Boidae family of boas, is made up of these two species.

The green anaconda is often referred to as the anaconda. After the reticulated python, this species, which lives in the Amazon rainforest and is the world’s biggest snake by weight, is the second-longest.

Non-venomous snakes known as anacondas (and all other boas) use constriction to subdue their food. They are skilled swimmers that feed on a variety of prey, including caimans, turtles, tapirs, deer, and capybaras. They prefer aquatic environments.


Where found: Atlantic, Indian, and Pacific Oceans

The Engraulidae family of anchovies includes 150 species. Anchovies have silvery green/blue bodies and are small fish. Most anchovy species live in the Atlantic, Indian, and Pacific Oceans’ temperate zones, despite the fact that only a tiny percentage of them live in freshwater.

Anchovies are filter feeders that swim with their mouths open and remove plankton and fish larvae from the water by filtering them.

Anchovies have a strong, salty flavor and are commercially hunted. They are used in a variety of dishes. Wherever they are found, fish play an important role in the ocean’s food web.

Angel Shark

Temperate and tropical seas worldwide, in particular.

Angel shark species are divided into 24 different types. The genus Squatina and the family Squatinidae are made up of angel sharks. They are found in temperate and tropical seas all over the world, particularly in shallow seas.

Angel sharks may resemble rays because of their flat bodies and broad pectoral (side) fins. They bury themselves in silt and wait for prey to come close to them, living on the sea bed. They may lunge at unsuspecting divers and deliver extremely quick attacks.


Type of animal: Fish

Order: Lophiiformes

Where found: Oceans worldwide

The Lophiiformes order encompasses 350 or more anglerfish species. Predatory fish live in both deep-sea and shallow-water environments, and they may be found in oceans across the globe.

Despite their various forms, anglerfish are all similar in their hunting behaviors. The anglerfish’s terrifying jaws are enticed within snapping distance of a specially-adapted fin with a fleshy ball known as an “esca” at the tip.

Many anglerfish species have a luminescent esca.


Type of animal: Mammal

Order: Pilosa

Suborder: Vermilingua

Where found: Central and South America

There are four species of anteater: the giant anteater, silky anteater, and the northern and southern tamanduas. All are found in Central and South America. The scientific name and conservation status of each anteater species is listed below:

  • Giant anteater, Myrmecophaga tridactyla, Vulnerable
  • Silky anteater, Cyclopes didactylus, Least Concern
  • Northern tamandua, Tamandua mexicana, Least Concern
  • Southern tamandua, Tamandua tetradactyla, Least Concern

An anteater’s diet is nearly entirely made up of tiny insects, particularly ants and termites, as the name implies. The tongue of an anteater is specially adapted, long, thin, and sticky; it’s used to catch insect prey.

The giant anteater is the world’s largest anteater, whereas the other three are arboreal (tree-dwelling). They are all terrestrial (ground-dwelling). For holding onto branches while climbing, arboreal anteaters have a prehensile (capable of grasping) tail.

Anteaters, along with sloths and armadillos, are part of the Xenarthra superorder.


Type of animal: Mammal

Family: Bovidae

Where found: Africa, Asia

Antelopes are swift, agile hoofed animals with lithe bodies and long, thin legs.

Both males and females have horns in most species, but the male horns are typically bigger. An antelope’s horns grow continuously, unlike the antlers of a deer, which are shed each year.

Africa is home to almost all of the 91 antelope species, with a few in Asia and some on other continents. Springboks, gazelles, duikers, elands, oryxes and kudus are some of the most well-known antelope species.

Antelopes are generally vegetarian, and they live in groups. Although some antelopes species live in woodlands, forests, and even desert settings, the majority of antelopes live in savannas.


Type of animal: Fish

Family: Toxotidae

Genus: Toxotes

Where found: Asia, Australia

The genus Toxotes and the family Toxotidae are home to seven different species of archerfish. While some species prefer freshwater, most live in brackish water. Asia and Australia are home to the Archerfish.

Archerfish are named after their spit-a-stream-of-water technique, which involves spitting a stream of water at land-based prey and knocking it into the water.

An archerfish uses its specially honed mouthparts to spray a stream of water up to 5 meters (16 feet) using its acute vision to aim.

Archerfish raise their lips just above the water’s surface before firing at insects on plants that grow above the water. The insect is knocked into the water by a stream of water, where the fish devours it.

An archerfish may occasionally leap straight out of the water to seize its victim.

Arctic Fox

Scientific name: Vulpes lagopus

The genuine fox genus, Vulpes, belongs to the Canidae family of dogs, and the Arctic fox is one of twelve species in it.

The Arctic fox has a variety of adaptations for surviving in this harsh, difficult environment, which it shares with other canids in the North American and Eurasian tundra. A multi-layered coat, a thick tail, and fur-covered paws are among the features.

During winter, the white coat of the Arctic fox serves as camouflage against the snow, while during summer, it turns brown to blend in with the environment. Over the winter, the coat is also 140% more thick, allowing for extra insulation.

Arctic Hare

Lepus arcticus is a type of mammal that lives in the Arctic.

With a nose-tail length of up to 80 cm / 2.62 ft and a weight of up to 7 kg / 15.4 lb, the Arctic hare is the largest species of hare. It may travel at speeds of up to 40 miles per hour (64 kilometers per hour).

During the summer, the species’ thick white coat turns brown to blend in with the bare tundra and help protect them from sunburn. (Arctic hares living in the northernmost parts of the species’ range are white throughout the year.)

Arctic hares may congregate in huge numbers throughout the winter.


Type of animal: Mammal

Order: Cingulata

Where found: South America, North America

Armadillos, a kind of ground-dwelling mammal with a flexible armored shell, The order Cingulata includes 21 species of armadillo. South America is home to the majority of armadillos, with Central and North America having a few.

Only the nine-banded armadillo is found in the United States on a regular basis. Texas has designated this species as a state small mammal.

Sloths and anteaters are part of the Xenarthra superorder, which includes armadillos.

Asian Elephant

Endangered Mammal Family Elephantidae

Outside of Africa, the Asian elephant is one of three extant elephant species.

The Asian elephant is Asia’s biggest land animal, and the second-biggest of the three elephant kinds (the African bush elephant being the biggest). It weighs up to 2.7 metric tonnes (6,000 pounds).

In comparison to the African bush elephant, the Asian elephant has smaller ears and smoother skin. Tuskless Asian elephants are another distinguishing characteristic, as is the case with both male and female African elephants.

The Indian elephant, Sri Lankan elephant, and Sumatran elephant are the three different subspecies of Asian elephants.

Habitat degradation and poaching have endangered the Asian elephant.


Type of animal: Bird

Family: Alcidae

Where found: Northern Hemisphere

The Alcidae family includes all 24 auk species. Auks are tiny, upright birds with short wings that are mostly black and white.

Puffins, murres, guillemots, razorbills, auklets, and murrelets are all part of the auk family.

The two species are not connected, despite substantial similarities between them.

Auks, like penguins, use their little and strong wings to swim through the sea. All auks, on the other hand, are able to fly.

The prey of auks are mostly fish or krill, and they use their exceptional swimming abilities to capture them.

Australian Shepherd

Mammal family Canidae, scientific name Canis familiaris/Canis lupus familiaris

The domestic dog breed Australian shepherd is native to the United States. Working dogs from Australia were brought to the nation by its forefathers. It’s a mid-sized breed with a strong herding instinct that was first popular among cowboys because of its intelligence.


North America, South America, Europe, Asia, and Australia are all home to this type of bird.

Long-legged, long-billed wading birds like the avocet are predominantly black and white. They ingest mostly aquatic insects, which they take in by swiping their tiny, upturned snouts across the water in a side-to-side motion.

The genus Recurvirostra includes four species of avocet that belong to the same family. Along with the five species of stilt, avocets are members of the Recurvirostridae family.

  • Recurvirostra novaehollandiae  North America, Europe, and Asia


The scientific name is Ambystoma mexicanum, and it is an amphibian.

The axolotl, a rare amphibian native to Mexico City, is critically endangered.

The species is now only found in a few canals, as several of the lakes where it was originally discovered have been drained. The species has become critically endangered in the wild as a result of this dramatic loss of habitat.

The axolotl is a popular pet and also of scientific interest because of its capacity to regrow not only lost limbs, but also portions of the eye, heart, and brain. Despite being endangered in the wild, it is a common captive animal.

The axolotl, a member of the Urodela order of salamanders, differs from other amphibians in that it does not experience metamorphosis. The axolotl continues to breathe with gills rather than lungs even as an adult.


Daubentonia madagascariensis is a critically endangered mammal species.

One of roughly 100 lemur species is the aye-aye. Only Madagascar, an African island nation, is home to this collection of monkeys.

The aye-aye, the world’s largest nocturnal primate, dwells in Madagascar’s rainforest on the east coast. The aye-aye uses echolocation to detect insect grubs; by tapping on trees with its bony third finger, it can sense if food is beneath the bark based on the sound.

Animals That Start With A: Conclusion

We hope that you’ve discovered some interesting animals with names beginning with A on this page.

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