From the category archives:

peruvian animals

Andean Bears

by admin on February 26, 2011

This is a great video about Andean Bears, also called Spectacled Bears, the only bear species native to Peru. Their unique facial markings are where they get the “spectacled” name. They are endangered, but programs like the one at the National Zoo in Washington, D.C. are being put in place to save them. Many rare, endangered species live in Peru, and unlike these bears which are native to the Andes in general, many are only native to Peru. These include the Yellow-tailed Woolly Monkey, the Incan Little Mastiff Bat, and the Andean Night Monkey. With efforts to save them, hopefully the amazing array of rare Peruvian animals will remain strong.

Peruvian Pelicans, Sea Lions, and Penguins

by admin on September 28, 2010

Believe it or not, one of my favorite parts of the Ballestas Islands boat tour was waiting in line to board. As a wildlife enthusiast, I love getting close to animals that I don’t get to see on a regular basis. The Peruvian pelicans that inhabit the area of Paracas and the Ballestas Islands are larger than most pelicans, and apparently very friendly if you’re willing to feed them fish. Locals feed the pelicans right next to the line for the boat tour, so tourists can see them up close. They even offered to let us throw the fish, but we declined! They are beautiful birds, and it was interesting to see them so well.

The sea lions also had a lot of personality, and were caught jumping in and out of fishermen’s’ nets to steal their catch of the day! Our tour guide wondered where they were, until we saw the fishing boat and discovered where they’d been hiding.

The penguins, or penguinos as they say in Peru, were fun to watch for the brief moment before they jumped into the water.

Paracas Boat Tour

by admin on September 27, 2010

On our most recent trip to Peru, we had the pleasure of visiting the “Galapagos of Peru,” or the Ballestas Islands. Located near the port of Pisco, and just outside the Paracas National Reserve, the islands are home to one of the largest sea lion communities in the world, as well as a variety of other wildlife. There are several hotels within walking distance of the dock, and several boats go out each morning. We stayed in Paracas for a night so we could take the morning boat tour at 8 am. The boats are small, and an unusually strong white current tossed our boat up and down through the waves at some points of the tour. Our tour guide explained that this is not a regular occurrence, and added that if that current had not been so strong, we would have seen more flamingos and dolphins. However, despite the less than favorable conditions, we saw several sea lions, including a mother and baby, countless birds (particularly pelicans) and some penguins, which were fun to watch and an unexpected sight for us. This area of Peru is definitely worth the trip for wildlife enthusiasts and especially photographers.

Peruvian Inca Orchids

by admin on June 26, 2010

Photo from

Although the Peruvian Inca Orchid may sound like a rare flower from the Amazon, it is actually a rare dog breed. The dogs are usually hairless, except for an occasional tuft on their heads. However, some coated dogs are born within the same litters as their hairless siblings. The Peruvian Inca Orchids that are bred in the US tend to have a very similar look, due to the fact that almost all of them originate from a dozen or less dogs that were imported here many years ago. The breed has changed over time in Peru, however, so the dogs that are imported today may have different characteristics or varieties. Since most Peruvian Inca Orchids are hairless, their owners have to apply sunscreen to their delicate skin. In Peru they are referred to as “Calato,” the Quechua word for “naked.”

Peruvian Hairless Dogs

by admin on December 15, 2009


Photo from Wikipedia

Photo from Wikipedia

Have you ever seen a hairless dog? They have been domesticated in Peru since the time of pre-Incan cultures. Ancient Peruvians left behind statues and carvings of these dogs, and they were also used during the reign of the Incas. Sometimes a tuft of hair grows on their heads, almost resembling a mohawk hairstyle. Other dogs are completely hairless. They are known for being clean pets that are not prone to fleas. Scientists say that the hairlessness may be the result of a recessive gene, since the average birth rate is one coated puppy for every two puppies that are born hairless.

Peruvian Llamas

by admin on October 9, 2009

Llamas are a classic sight in Peru, where they are often herded in large groups, especially in the Andes. These animals have been an important part of Peruvian culture for centuries, and today are even credited as a great asset to the Inca Empire. They have been used for transportation and wool throughout Peru’s history, and are still valuable to Peruvians today. They are also a favorite with tourists, and many people pay a small fee to take photos with them and native Peruvians in traditional dress. Peru has the largest population of llamas in the world – here is a photo of a Peruvian llama with my daughter Elaine. Animal lovers will enjoy visiting with the llamas on a trip to Peru.