Anteaters are toothless mammals that feed primarily
on ants and termites.
Other Names: antbear, ant bear, echidna,
myrmecobius fasciatus, new world anteater, numbat,
Species: Anteaters that exist today are
divided into three genera's that include: Giant
Anteater, the Silky Anteater, and the Northern
and Southern Tamandua anteaters.
Anteater Species Include:
Pygmy Anteater (aka
Silky Anteater) - Cyclopes Didactylus
Giant Anteater - Myrmecophaga
Lesser Anteaters - Tamandua
Tetradactyla and Tamandua Mexicana
Anteater in Foreign Languages:
Cherokee: dosvdali digayesgi
Navajo: wóláchíí' yildeelí
Spanish: oso hormiguero
Swahili: kiharara / loma
Size: The smallest anteater species is the Silky
Anteater, measuring 14-18 inches in length and weighing
approximately 14 oz. The largest anteater species is
the Giant Anteater which is 40-48 inches long (with
a tail length of 28-35 inches)and weighs 60-140 lbs.
Male anteaters are heavier than their female counterparts.
Habitat: Anteaters are found in South and Central
America, their habitat includes dry tropical forests,
rain forests, grasslands, and savannas.
Description: .Anteaters have long, sticky tongue
and powerful claws. They have a tube-shaped mouth with
lips but no teeth and a prehensile tail. Anteaters are
covered with dense, long fur protects that protects
them from insect attacks. With the exception of the
Giant Anteater all species of anteaters have a prehensile
tail. Anteaters have small rounded external ears are
Senses: Anteaters are thought to have good hearing,
poor eyesight but an excellent sense of smell.
Behavior: Anteaters protect a 1 to 1.5 square
miles territory that they call home.
Diet: Anteaters use large, curved front
claws to tear open ant and termite mounds. Anteaters
will also eat beetle larvae and bees.
Did You Know?
Anteaters have the lowest body temperature
of any mammal. Anteaters can tolerate
greater fluctuations in body temperature
than most mammals.
Gestation: Giant anteaters carry their young
for approximately 190 days. The gestation length may
vary for other species of anteaters.
Life Span: The puma and the jaguar are
natural predators of the anteater. The life span
of the anteater varies by species.
Did You Know?
The Spiny Anteater, Banded Anteater,
Cape Anteater and Scaly Anteater are
not considered "true anteaters".
Social Structure: Adult anteaters are normally