For travelers who are fond of nature, Peru is a top destination due to its remarkable diversity in wildlife. It is one of the few countries in the world considered “mega diverse” owing to the presence of the Pacific Ocean, the Andes mountains, and the Amazon rainforest. 10% of the Peruvian landscape is protected by the government in the form of what are called “Natural Areas” – in these regions, wild flora and fauna are preserved by law, and the exploitation of natural resources and establishment of human settlements is expressly forbidden. Here are some of the fauna and flora of Peru that you can see for yourself the next time you visit!
When it comes to Peruvian fauna, the first thing most people think of is the alpaca. This mammal is similar to the llama and is mainly raised in the pastures of the level heights of the Andes high above sea level. Alpaca fiber is used to make many different types of clothing and it won’t be difficult to find great souvenirs made of this material during your travels. Other mammals such as the jaguar and spectacled bear are native to regions of Peru – in total over 500 mammalian species live here.
Birds are also quite varied in Peru. There are over 1800 different species of birds – including Peru’s distinctive national bird, the Andean cock-of-the-rock. One of Peru’s Natural Areas, the Manu Biosphere Reserve, is thought to hold the highest concentration of bird species in the whole world – over 1,000, or about one out of every nine present on the entire planet. In the rainforest areas, reptiles and amphibian species are easily identifiable and just as varied.
Quinoa is the most recognizable of Peru’s flora in North America. The food we consume is actually the seeds of an annual plant and known for being rich in vitamins, minerals, and protein. The overall flora profile of Peru is just as diverse as its fauna profile, again owing to the varied ecosystems present with the country’s borders. In the rainforest and jungle areas, you can find moss, orchids, bromeliads, rubber trees, cedars, and much more. The coastline features cacti, while the Andes has its own ecosystem that thrives on the conditions of the high altitudes.
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