Latin name: Vermilingua
size: 80 - 120cm
mass: 30 - 50kg
Older: 10 - 20 years
Appearance: black, white and brown
Sexual dimorphism: No
Nutrition type: Insectivore (insectivore)
food: Ants, termites
distribution: Central America, South America
original origin: South America
Sleep-wake rhythm: diurnal
habitat: Wetlands, savanna, wetlands, forest
natural enemies: Jaguar, cougar
sexual maturity: about the age of four
mating season: September October
gestation period: 120 - 190 days
litter size: 1 cub
social behavior: Loners
Threatened with extinction: No
Further profiles of animals can be found in the Encyclopaedia.
Interesting facts about the anteater
- The anteater can be associated with the Nebengelenktieren and the Zahnarmmen simultaneously to two different groups. As side-runners, anteaters have additional articular processes on the thoracic and lumbar spine and are therefore closely related to the sloths.
- Anteaters are native to Central and South America, where they are found in forests, savannas, agricultural areas and wetlands, depending on the species. They prefer to stay near waters.
- Within the anteater family there are four different species, sharing characteristic physique, strong claws and dense and long fur dress.
- With a body length of up to 120 centimeters, a body weight of up to fifty kilograms and a tail length of about seventy centimeters, the Great Anteater is the largest member of this genus. The dwarf ant bear, however, is just once a foot. In addition, the family still includes the northern and southern Tamandu.
- Conspicuous in the Great Anteater are the striking black markings of the predominantly greyish brown and white coat, the pronounced, up to forty centimeters long and narrow snout and the relatively small head.
- Female anteaters are usually slightly larger and heavier than their male counterparts.
- Anteaters feed, as their name suggests, mainly on ants and termites, whose nests they track down with their extremely odor-sensitive muzzle. Her prey takes her up with the long tongue.
- They are loners who are very territorial and go hunting for food in their area as they travel long distances. They are diurnal and retire at night to their hiding places in bushes or tree hollows.
- The giant anteater lives exclusively as a bottom dweller, the smaller species are good climbers and are mainly on trees.
- The ant colony buildings never completely destroy them so they can recover after the attack. For the digging in the nests, anteaters use their pronounced claws, which sit at the fore and hind feet at the end of the five toes.
- The sharp claws also serve the anteaters as a defense against predators, which may be pumas or jaguars and birds of prey, depending on the species. The biggest threat to these animals, however, comes from the people who hunt them for their fur.
- When threatened, anteaters raise their hind legs and defend themselves with their razor-sharp claws.
- In areas populated by humans, anteaters emit their foraging in the night and rest during the day in their hiding places. Due to the night activity, however, many animals fall victim to road traffic.
- Only in the mating season males and females meet. After a gestation period of about 200 days, the female gives birth to a young that lives on the mother's back for the first half year. It remains in their care for almost two years and becomes sexually mature at the age of about four years.