window spacer


giant anteater photo

Click on the image to return to the gallery

The Giant Anteater (Myrmecophaga tridactyla) is rarely seen in the wild, unlike evidence of its activities, where it has ripped open red forest clay—using its powerful front claws—in search of food. Of course, it eats only ants. A long, sticky tongue extends deep into the tunnels of ant nests. It has no teeth nor, in fact, jaws at all. The upper and lower jaws are fused to make a long tube. Hence they belong to a uniquely South American group of animals, the Edentates, which means "no teeth" (Sloths and armadillos are in the same group.) Fine dense hairs the texture of velvet prevent ants from biting the snout. Few predators attack these animals which defend themselves with their front claws.

Top of page

Learn about anteater natural history

Learn about edentate natural history

previous photo

sloth photo


next photo

tent making bat photo

tent making bat

Back to Amazon animals

© Jungle Photos 2000-2014

window spacer