So many interesting creatures roam the planet, and when it comes to wildlife, people have their classic favorites like the tiger, zebra, elephant and rhinoceros. There are many other animal species to check out when traveling, from the tiny to the gargantuan and each with very unique characteristics. Lonely Planet’s A to Z of Wildlife Watching is a spectacular guide on where to find these incredible beasts in their special habitats.
Some of Lonely Planet’s favorites include the following:
The aardvark is a curious figure with its famous ant-guzzling snout and pig-like body. The nocturnal creature is a native of sub-Saharan Africa and can protect itself from lions and hyenas by digging a deep hole and covering itself in ten minutes. There are even aardvark tours to take in the South African Karoo reserves to watch this sniffing expert walking about.
The Atlantic Puffin is another extraordinary animal with its bright orange beak and black eyeshadow appearance. The ugly-cute, rugged seabird likes to inhabit the rocky coastlines of the British Isles in large colonies. The puffin enjoys spending most of its time bobbing on the ocean and diving after small fish
The bottlenose dolphin is a beloved sea lover with keen intelligence and athletic prowess and can be seen in tropical waters around the globe. These ocean mammals are beautiful to observe during play and flipping out of the water.
The Hercules beetle might sound like a wee insect, but it actually measures some 15 centimeters in length. Its striking horns are used in battle against competitive male beetles. The creatures can be found hanging out in dead wood in Costa Rica.
The leafy sea dragon is one weird-looking creature that snorkellers enjoy bumping into underwater. Australia’s southwestern coasts are the only places to encounter this rare sea fish undulating about.
The red-eyed tree frog is a cool-looking amphibian with bright green color and huge orange eye sockets. The cutie can be found leaping around Costa Rica; it feels at home along with 133 native frog species.