Giant Anteater

Giant Anteater    Myrmecophaga tridactyla

Type of Animal:

Grasslands, savanna, swamps, tropical forest, woodlands, dry forest

Many parts of C. & S. America, except mountainous areas & much of S. South America

Furry w/ blackish stripe & many gray-brown areas plus bushy tail & long snout. Also long, can-opener claws.

Ants, termites, beetles, insect larvae, worms, grubs, fruit

Status in Wild:

Breeding in zoos & wildlife parks


Additional Info:


Male-121 lbs
Female-110 lbs
Young-3-9 lbs

6.5 months

2 ft

Body Length:
3.3-3.9 ft

Life Span: 
15-25 years

Tail Length:
2.1-3 ft

Main predators are jaguars & pumas. Ocelots prey on young.

Closest relatives are sloths & armadillos.

Young anteaters ride on mom’s back.

Poor eyesight & hearing but great sense of smell. In fact, sense of smell 40 times as powerful as human’s.

Even though somewhat territorial, fights uncommon.

They lack teeth.

Almost exclusively terrestrial.

Only makes bellowing noise when threatened. If not threatened, generally silent.

Tongues often somewhat spiny.

Declining due to hunting for meat/skin, collisions with cars, habitat loss, deforestation, human encroachment, wildfires, & killing as pests.

Females have 1 baby every 2 years, which is when previous youngster leaves mom-though sometimes youngsters will leave as early as 1.4-1.5 months.

When taking ants from anthills and termites from termite mounds, anteaters raise up on hind legs.

They are surprisingly good swimmers.

Fun Fact(s):
They can flick tongue in & out up to 150 times per minute.

Can eat as many as 50,000 insects in a day with a 2 ft long tongue.

Spanish name for anteater is “oso hormiguero” meaning “ant bear”.

Sleep as much as 15 hours per day.

Generally non-aggressive, anteaters use sharp digging claws to attack if provoked & females w/ young can be dangerous. These claws can cause serious wounds to humans, jaguars, & pumas.

11 thoughts on “Giant Anteater

  1. Marcella

    Having read this I believed it was rather enlightening.

    I appreciate you finding the time and effort to put this content together.
    I once again find myself personally spending way too much time both reading and posting comments.
    But so what, it was still worth it!

  2. Christie

    Heya i am for the first time here. I found this
    board and I find It truly useful & it helped me out much.
    I hope to give something back and help others like you helped me.

  3. Myrtle

    Remarkable things here. I am very satisfied to peer your
    post. Thanks a lot and I’m looking ahead to contact you.
    Will you please drop me a mail?

  4. Rodrick

    You really make it seem so easy with your presentation but I find
    this matter to be really something that I think I would never understand.

    It seems too complicated and very broad for me.
    I am looking forward for your next post, I’ll try to get
    the hang of it!

  5. Errol

    Heya i’m for the primary time here. I found this board and
    I to find It truly useful & it helped me out a lot. I am hoping to present
    something again and help others like you helped me.

  6. Gavin

    A fascinating discussion is definitely worth comment.

    I think that you should write more about this topic,
    it might not be a taboo subject but typically people don’t speak
    about such subjects. To the next! Many thanks!!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *