According to the Sloth Conservation Society, there are 4 living species of three-fingered sloths, all of which live within the forests of Central and South America where the tropical climate maintains relatively warm temperatures all year round.
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Guyana’s National Flower, the Victoria Amazonica, has lost its record as the world’s largest water lily. Up to July, 2022, the Victoria Amazonica had boasted the title of the world’s largest water lily. However, a new water lily, called the Victoria Boliviana, has blown the Victoria Amazonica out the water and taken its spot as the world’s largest water lily.
The species of freshwater fish, Hoplias Aimara, is known in Guyana as the haimara or wolf fish. In other parts of the world, it is called anjumara, traira, trahira, manjuma, anjoemara, and wolf fish. The haimara is a freshwater fish which grows to more than 4 feet in length, but the average length is 3 feet. It weighs on average 88 lbs. The haimara is native to northern South American countries including Brazil, Guyana, Venezuela, Colombia, French Guiana, and Suriname. It is also found in the rivers of neighboring Trinidad and Tobago.
The tarpon may be described as a “euryhaline species” because it can survive in a wide variety of salinity and therefore lives in both the ocean and in fresh waters. The tarpon breeds mostly in the oceans in salt water. The females can lay up to 12 million eggs at once. They spawn their eggs between the months of March and July. Tarpons tend to swim upriver from the ocean and often inhabit rivers, creeks, tidal pools, and salt marshes. Some return to the ocean but others stay in freshwater locations.
The ocelot is a mammal native to the North, South, and Central Americas as well as the Caribbean Islands of Trinidad and Margarita. Ocelots are carnivores meaning they eat other animals. Since it prefers to hunt during the night, the ocelot is described as a nocturnal animal.
The giant river otter is only found South America, and Guyana is one of the countries in which it is found. Each giant river otter has a signature mark on its throat: the pattern at the bottom of the throat is different for each giant otter so you can tell one from the other. This helps scientists to keep track of the number of giant otters present in a particular location.
Leptophis ahaetulla, called Parrot Snake or Lora, is a venomous and dangerous serpent found in various parts of Guyana, especially the Rupununi Savannahs. The species is also found in many other countries across South and Central Americas.
The hydrolycus armatus, or payara, is a predatory fish that preys on smaller fishes. It uses its sharp fangs to impale preys. The payara can grow to up to 1 meter in length. The hydrolycus armatus is often confused with its smaller cousin which only grows up to 1.7 feet, the hydrolycus scomberoides, also called payara and vampire fish.
The peacock bass fish is colloquially called Luckanani by the people of Guyana, South America. It belongs to the genus cichia. In Brazil, the peacock bass is called tucanare, and the Spanish refer to it as pavon.
Guyana is known as the land of the giants, and the giant anteater, the world’s largest anteater, is one of the six or seven reasons why. The giant anteater goes by the scientific name Myrmecophaga tridactyla. It is a mammal which feeds on insects and has an average lifespan of 14 years. About two to three feet in height, the giant anteater weighs between 40 and 140 pounds. The giant anteater can reach as long as eight feet from the tip of its snout to the end of its tail.
The electric eel is living proof of a fact we all know: that God invented electricity long before humans discovered it. The electric eel is a natural marvel which produces electricity through bodily functions. It can electrocute other animals, but is never affected by the electrical shocks it delivers.
The flower of Victoria Amazonica, previously called the Victoria Regia, and also known as the Giant Water Lily is Guyana’s National Flower. Victoria Amazonica is the world’s second largest water lily with its leaves measuring a whooping 10 feet in diameter floating on the surface of the water. The stalk of the Victoria Amazonica extends as much as 26 feet (8 meters) below the surface of the water. The flower of the Victoria Amazonica, which it bears almost every week during the summer months, is also the largest flower in the world. The flower of the Victoria Amazonica stays in blossom for just two to three days – long enough to facilitate pollination.
The green anaconda is a species of reptiles found throughout South America including Guyana, Suriname, French Guiana, and Brazil. The species is especially prolific in the northern part of Brazil. In Guyana, the Green Anaconda was spotted by photographer Keanu Thomas in the wetlands of the Essequibo Coast where these photos were taken.
Guyana is known as the land of the giants, and the arapaima, the world’s largest freshwater fish, is one of the reasons why. The arapaima is a “gentle giant” with a suction power that is damaging to smaller fish up to four feet away. The arapaima can grow as long as 3 meters and weigh up to 440 pounds. In 2015, a monster arapaima was caught in Guyana which weighed 416 pounds!
Known in some places as the Dumb Rattler, the bushmaster is one of the largest vipers in the world. A member of the rattlesnake family, the bushmaster is more dangerous than the rattlesnake because it has no rattle to warn off its potential victim.